Chef Bear Bowls

Solid in Function Beautiful in Form

I am Chef Bear and I make wooden bowls.  Beautiful bowls, salad bowls, fruit bowls, everything bowls, your favorite bowl that you reach for everyday. Greener than Green, Righter than Rain, from West Virginia Hardwoods -- I made your Bowl.

Connections, Organic Growth, and a Kick-Ass Logo

I write this blog in my head constantly, I am shocked at how few actually exhist... 

So, my shop is in an old warehouse full of other peoples treasures, aka JUNK, and in the opposite corner of the sea of treasures is a room where Sarah keeps her stuff.  Printing stuff, old timey Printing stuff. Drawers of Fonts and type and little gizmos and a BIG machine that whirls and throws paper about, smashing words on a page with conviction long gone, a machine created before OSHA was even a twinkle in someone's political eye. 

Fall Back to the late end of last winter, and I'm getting jurried into Tamarack Gallery and they mention that a little card with "Bowl Care" would be useful good thing to have.  No doubt, I cannot agree more.  Hey, Sarah can we print a little bifold thingy with an artist statement and bowl care and stuff?  What kind of Bowl do you want?  That's how that started. 

So we -- no, Sarah, did a small run for the first phase and I was off.  Tamarack got an order and things progressed and Spring came and Farmers Market happend and Tamarack called and I had another BIG order.  Hey, Sarah, time to revisit this by fold thingy.  We needed something to put on the front.  I needed a Logo, I had a Logo, I needed a logo that was me now, something with a sense of place, reflective of this time... 

I sign my bowls with an interlocked CB.  That would be awesome, that would Rule! 

Really, this looks great burned into the bottom of your bowl along with the date created.

Really, this looks great burned into the bottom of your bowl along with the date created.

I was turning and got text with the picture above and ya, no.  So I said well what about a log on end grain? and in my head I was thinking oK, I could probably draw that...  then I got this  

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There it was, a log on end grain, took about 30 seconds and I couldn't have drawn it.  In the restaurant world I have come to realize that there are a lot of people in this world with talent, and this is a damn good thing.  What if we put a bowl on it? 

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Awesome!  Yes that's great go with it, I trust you, make it happen.  I go back to turning and feeling very happy about things.  My old logo could have been done but I would have had to have  a plate made and it was awfully stylized all of this was kinda weighing on me and I was thrilled that something was coming together.  

 

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Another text.  Even better, I said.  I figured that was that and she would scan it in or do what you do, you know put it on a zip drive that plugs into her 19th century worlitzer printing press thingy.   I'm not dumb but I don't think about stuff I don't need to think about, lots of things in life are a mystery and I'm fine with that.

Days go by, and then I find this. 

 

Sarah's Artist Proof of the bi-fold thingy cover

Sarah's Artist Proof of the bi-fold thingy cover

Sarah had made an honest to goodness old-timey woodcut.  She later explained that she went through and selected some of the banged up type, a B with a chunk missing out of it. All of this gets clamped together with the type and stuff.  I probably peed a little bit I was so excited.  This to me was a great reflection of where I'm at, doing what I'm doing.  I love this.   

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When you get a bowl and it comes with one of these little bifold bowl Care thingys know that Sarah busted her ass hand inking and pressing each and every one, the BIG machine that goes Bing threw a belt, After 2 days she had 65 of them done, they are rare and not to be tossed about! 

 

I couldn't help it!  I ordered some business cards, I like it though...

I couldn't help it!  I ordered some business cards, I like it though...

Good Problems

I wrote this last night and the cable went out and so I get to revisit this again...  I'm glad for the opportunity.

I recently took a big order down to a gallery I work with.  I always take extras and they usually up the order.  This last time they took every piece I brought, dramatically upping the order.  This is great! but...  I took every available piece I had.  Everything is sold, but I'm out of stock, and that's a problem.  It's a good problem, but still.

At work I'm down two assistants, there is nothing good about that it's just a problem.  We were down one and then I got some apples and the lady that gave me the apples broke her foot after loading my apples in the truck, she was my Assistant manager and while the apples are good her broken foot is a problem.  I've been working a lot and I think the silver lining there is that there has been a huge swing in the work life turn triad of well being.  I've spent a lot more time in the work think stress side and not enough in the peace flow create turning side.   

So I got a couple of hours yesterday morning and went to the shop.  Being out of everything thus needing everything I could make anything and call it being productive.  Last trip to BFM (Bridgeport Farmers Market) I was given some chunks of Maple from Jug Head Ed, a split crotch piece and some spalted stuff...  Anyway this split crotch was firewood with nice figure on it, not big enough for a platter, a bowl would not truely show the figure, then I realized that spun on end grain this would make a decent Utensil Holder, and it did .  

Life has been very full and rich this week.  If not at first readily apparent slowly turn it over and look close and find the good -- it's all around us.

 

Not bad firewood.  Thanks Ed.

Not bad firewood.  Thanks Ed.

Checking in an order at Tamarack.

Checking in an order at Tamarack.

Otis and Sophia looking for the good at Princess Palace.

Otis and Sophia looking for the good at Princess Palace.

All photos taken by me ChefBear, on my iPhone, as life happens.