Inspiration: The Yellowstone

The Helena Woodworker’s Guild recently held their annual exhibit at the Myrna Loy Center for the Arts in Helena, Montana. We put the show up on December 3 and held our opening reception on December 10th, the night of the Helena Winter Art Walk. We had pieces by John Hinshaw, Priscilla Bode, Tim Carney, Travis Smith, Chris Yavah. We had great attendance at the opening, a good time and hopefully generated lots of interest in the abilities of Helena’s many talented woodworkers. We’ll be posting some photos of the exhibit and opening soon.

In the meantime, I would like to introduce Tim’s most recent one of a kind piece, The Yellowstone, inspired by one of North America’s most awesome rivers and national parks. This hall table’s live-edge slab top is made of curly mango accented with carved ripples in one end. The trestle is a sinuous fluid shape carved of lacewood and the legs’ tapered laminations are of padauk and mahogany.

The Yellowstone detail

The Yellowstone


Lewis River Canyon, Yellowstone Park Photo by Hayden61

Yellowstone Park
is filled with natural wonders that have fascinated people for hundreds – or thousands – of years. Yet there are beautiful forces equally as passionate, hidden under the surface of the land. Firey reds, sulphuric yellows and vibrant turquoises are created by minerals pushed from deep under the earth’s crust. In Yellowstone Gorge, you can see colors in the geological layers like paint dripping on a gigantic canvas.

And though we can see evidence of earth’s geothermal activity in the paint pots, geysers and bubbling hotsprings of the park, imagine what we can’t see … the power and lifeforce under the surface.

Lacewood Detail

Although the table top itself is fine to look at, if you look beneath the live-edge slab top, even through the knot holes you can see layers of the piece. Tim carved “ripples” in the table top, where the slab’s shape seemed to naturally flow like water. He chose lacewood to make a rippling trestle, because lacewood’s grain also recalls the turbulence and dancing movement of rough river whitewater. Or when a trout rises to mouth the reflecting river’s surface.

The legs are shaped with the thought of the volcanic activity and subsurface underneath Yellowstone Park.

The Yellowstone

Ripples Detail