As the wood turns: Creative art focus of group’s meeting

Published 5:46 am Wednesday, January 25, 2017

A program on the creative art of woodturning was presented when the Washington Parish Art Association held its January 10 meeting at the home of Johnny and Dianne Green in Franklinton.

Green presented an informative program in his studio, assisted by fellow woodturner Jim Creel. Green has consistently showed beautiful wood art at the art association’s annual art show and sale. His creations are always popular with viewers as he exposes nature’s treasures beneath the bark in natural forms, as well as bowls, pots and other creative items.

The program began with a short tour of Green’s gallery of over 100 pieces of wood that he has turned and shaped on wood lathes. After the gallery tour, the group moved next door to the “wood shed,” with its array of wood turning equipment.

Creel, who is from the Hammond area, presented his method of turning very small finials on a wood lathe. The finial started out as a 6-inch long piece of Purple Heart wood. Creel first rounded the block into a cylinder, and then shaped a leg for a small stool.

The finished piece eventually took the form of a graceful taper, originating with a ball on the base end and terminating with a needle point on the top. Creel turns many finials that are smaller than a tooth pick. The taper and point are so small he uses magnified glasses to see the rotating wood.

While Creel was turning his finial, Green illustrated traditional bowl turning on a second lathe. He then showed the use of a laser to determine wall thickness while hollowing the inside of tall vessels.

Green also demonstrated a customized slow speed lathe used to make very large turnings that are too big to fit on the largest commercially available wood lathes. This specialty equipment allows him to turn the big forked limb pieces that are his signature shape.

The 30 members and guests in attendance also enjoyed seeing the work of various other artists displayed in the Green home.

President Theresa Lomzenski called for routine reports during the business session.

Ann Warner reminded members of the upcoming annual art show and sale to be held on Sunday, March 22 at the home of Sara Nelson, located at 28035 Winfred Bateman Road in Clifton. Artwork will be accepted on Wednesday, March 18, beginning at 2 p.m. at the Nelson home.

She gave handouts with the updates and requirements for entries, noting Wednesday afternoon is the deadline for handing in work. Once again, the show will be professionally hung by Cindy Nicholas of Baton Rouge. Christine Beatty reminded members of the need for food for the show.

Terry Seal reported on the successful poster sale at the Washington Parish Fair and also gave an update on the Franklinton Revolving Art Gallery. Members of this committee include Seal, Jeanne Green, Kaye Williams and Ellen Barrett.

Debbie Lusco and Esma Irving told the group about the upcoming art gallery to be held at Our Lady of Angels Hospital in Bogalusa. For additional information, contact either of these members.

The hostesses, Ann Warner, Anne Crawford, Lenora Frazier and Sara Nelson, provided a meal prior to the meeting. The next meeting will be held in March prior to the annual art show and sale.

Bob Ann Breland wrote this article.