Woodenheart - Wood creations by Mike Laine

Everything built is influenced by the how the work is done, whether it’s the shoes you wear, the chair you sit in, or the building you live in. I make things of wood, and the process I use is instrumental in the texture, character, and aesthetic of my products. Part of the beauty in my work comes from the way in which the material is handled, and the way it is joined and put together, using many of the wood connections that woodworkers have been using for thousands of years. There is a wide array of materials and fasteners that have never been in play historically, and I use a lot of them, but I still rely on many of the traditional methods. For example, I like to smooth and shape wood with hand tools, creating a finish that shimmers, and a look that makes people want to touch it.

It is possible that we have cut down a tragic amount of the world’s forests, perhaps a catastrophic amount, so using wood today has social and political implications, like it or not. I’m committed to using as much recycled wood in my work as possible, and it shows. Not all of the evidence from previous use is hidden in the new product. Also, it seems a bit short sighted to use wood that needed 500 years or more to grow in projects expected to last only 20 years. I use new cut wood whenever it’s required, but I suspect that increasingly we will be using recycled wood whenever possible. This kind of thinking influences how I use wood.