paddles… enhancing the beauty of nature, but not quite the way nature intended
My paddles are made from an ever increasing selection of exotic woods. No two are the same, with variations in shape, size, decorative and functional details, and of course timber selection ensuring each paddle is a unique piece of functional product.
I tend to divide my paddle design thoughts into two components; form and function.
The style of my paddles has evolved over time, but there have been certain personality present from my first developmental attempts, such as the use of solid wood, balanced handle designs, and the encompassment of small details made from lexal, leather, metals, and contrasting wood. I like to allow the wood speak to me and use the natural features of a piece of wood in the design of the paddle.
When I started, my thoughts started evolving on my paddle designs. But we saw in many other wooden paddles were cut from a solid piece of wood, making the blade and handle were both the same thickness. Personally I determined that the handle was too thin or the blade was too thick for my taste.
Some woodworkers address this by laminating extra pieces of wood onto the handle area to make it thicker, which fixed the functionality issue but did not fully quenching my creative perceptions. So I decided I was going to make the majority of mine from one solid piece of wood and have a handle which was thicker than the blade. This would strengthen, complement and intensify the look and use of the paddle. We found the thicker handle/thinner blade combination better balanced, better looking and reinforce the usability of the paddle when you hold and swing the paddle.
As I said earlier, the wood needs to speak and plays a part in the function of a paddle by the fluctuation in wood density between different species. By choosing the perfect type of wood it is possible to make small heavy paddles, large lightweight ones, or any other variation to suit the type of impact sensation desired.