I thought I would take a few moments … and answer a couple of the questions that you folks, over and over … have never asked. For example … “Why did you stop painting altogether, after 30 years, and begin building flutes instead?” Funny you should ask. I suffered blinding trauma to my right eye in an accident on a farm in Perkins, OK. When that happens, you lose your perception of depth and perspective. Everything you see looks like a two dimensional postcard. Driving takes on a whole new level of thrills as well. Anyway, I was pretty upset with myself for quite some time. I was also pretty angry with God as well … because this effectively brought my plans of purchasing a shiny new Harley-Davidson to a screeching halt. What a trickster. However, since I could still HEAR fairly well, I started building flutes with specific voice characteristics, since those I purchased in the past didn’t have much volume. I figured short, plus big bore, equals loud, and basically I was right. What I wasn’t prepared for, was the creative and cathartic path I found myself traveling. The need to express, also known as creativity, is kind of like toothpaste. It’s going to go somewhere when you squeeze the tube, and life presents a number of challenges that more or less squeeze your tube on occasion. All in all, I would rather have my sight back, but then I probably would have killed myself on my shiny new Harley-Davidson…and I wouldn’t be building flutes
Another blog reader never asked, “How long does it take you to build a flute?” Ok then … that’s a tough one. Twice a year, I engage in a celebration I call “rip-n-rout week.” That’s all I do. I destroy my saw blades and my router bits. Then the table saw and the table router go back in the shop to become, oddly enough, tables, for all the stuff I use the rest of the year. I end up with about 70 blanks of about 20 different woods until I do it all over again. From that point forward, I spend about 30 hours, depending on how nasty the wood is, turning the sticks into a flute. The time factor keeps going up, as I spend more and more time on fetish blocks, and it doesn’t factor in “rip-n-rout week,” but I’m firing these things out at the blistering speed of about 3 a month.
I’ll post more questions you never asked later. Thanks.
Rich Halliburton President, CEO, CFO, COO/ Querencia Woodwinds