A Craftsmen Legacy: Series 1
Eric Gorges travels across the United States to gain insight into craftsmanship in the 21st century. Focusing on the history of a traditional craft and its importance in the U.S. today, episodes include interviews with master craftsmen and women, who explain why they chose their craft and the importance of keeping these traditions alive.
Part 1: Woodworker
John Wilson is a writer, a teacher and a woodworker. Host Eric Gorges visits John at his home shop and learns how to make a shoulder plane. Eric learns the history of shop made tools, how to home temper tool-steel and the importance of salt in the woodshop.
Part 2: Glassblower
Host Eric Gorges visits a friend, April Wagner. April is a glass blower who works in abstract art. Eric learns how hot a glass studio is and how to make a glass cup. Eric and April discuss the connection between making a sacrafice when starting up a business and the give and take that successful craft people have to make and the rewards that eventually come.
Part 3: Guitar Maker
Bryan Galloup builds guitars and runs a school to teach others the craft of guitar making. Host Eric Gorges visits the school and learns what it takes to build a guitar from scratch. The discussion about the tonal properties of wood, steam bending and some of the key steps of guitar building.
Part 4: Stone Carver
Eric Gorges visits with Walter Arnold. Walter is an accomplished stone carver who started his career at a very early age. Eric learns a little about what it takes to carve lime stone and marble. The history of stone carving and early days of Walters apprenticeship in Italy, including kicking around the same quarry that Michelangelo went shopping for his marble.
Part 5: Goldsmith
Host Eric visits a goldsmith in the mountains. Susan McDonough works in a small studio on her familys farm.
Eric makes a silver ring using a technique over 3000 years old. The conversation turns to the paths that craftpeople take in their journey. Its neither straight nor connected. Some people take years to end up doing what they want.
Part 6: Potter
Host Eric Gorges visits potter and musician Akira Satake. Akira started his career as an accomplished photographer in Japan, then another successful career in New York as a recording studio owner and a session banjo player before, at the age of 42 deciding that Pottery was his true passion.
Part 7: Saddle Maker
Eric Gorges visits the Caldwell ranch and learns how saddles are made. Charon and Tom Caldwell embody the craftperson who knows when its time to strike out on their own. After years of successfully working for a top saddle maker, they charted their own paths and created a revolution in the way that saddles are fitted to the horse.
Part 8: Gun Maker
Mike Brooks builds long rifles based on designs over 100 years old. Host Eric Gorges discovers the history of a long rifle and shoots one. Eric learns that the old ways of the gunsmith are alive and well. Building skills that brought the long riffle to the American south and heartland are the same methods that are used today.
Part 9: Blacksmith
Eric visits with Lorelei Sims. Lorelei is a talented blacksmith in a mostly male dominated trade. Eric learns how to make a dagger. Over the course of the conversation, the life of a blacksmith is revealed. Its communal and family oriented and often time the way of life expands from the shop to the home
Part 10: Knife Maker
Knife-maker Tim Zowada’s creations start with sand collected from Lake Superior. Host Eric Gorges visits with Tim and makes a knife.
Part 11: Book Maker
Chad Pastotnik makes fine art books. Eric Gorges visits Chads studio to learn about 400-year-old printing and binding techniques.
Part 12: Boat Maker
John Yothers builds beautiful and very functional wooden boats. Host Eric Gorges learns the proper way to blueprint a boat and also what goes into building a boat from scratch.
Part 13: Basket Weaver
Host Eric Gorges visits with Ron Paquin, a Native American who teaches others the fine craft of bark basket weaving. Eric and Ron both build baskets together