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Chris Ramsey was born in 1962 in New York City, spent a few years in Utah and grew up in Northern California. It was in California where his desire for woodworking began to develop. He took woodshop in high school and made all of the typical projects that students make. Chris recalls, “There was a big lathe in the corner, covered up with a sheet, but we were not allowed to use it. We were told that it was a dangerous piece of equipment and the school’s insurance policy would not permit students to use the lathe.”

Ramsey moved from California to Kentucky “to get out of the ‘rat race’” and lived on a houseboat on Lake Cumberland. After a few very cold winters, “I discovered that there is not much R-value in a piece of plywood so I moved out of the houseboat and into my house.”

With limited outdoor activity in the winter months, Chris felt he needed a hobby that would help pass the time until summer returned. In 1998 his identical twin brother, David, presented him with a birthday gift, a small “starter” lathe, which sparked his interest. He now had the tool that, for three years in high school, he was forbidden to touch, and he soon became absorbed with the turning process. “After I bought a Oneway I spent every free moment in the shop. I was addicted.”

At that time, he owned a communications company (American Network Cable) which required that he spend many weekends and late nights away from his family. He would turn for hours at the lathe during the weekdays and found a great deal of enjoyment while turning.

He says, “In 2000 I made the decision that money was not everything and, with my gallery sales on a steady increase, made the jump from an unhappy owner of a company to a much happier full-time woodturner” a move he has never regretted.

Chris says of one aspect of turning, “Although I was most interested in turning wooden hats early in my career, it was not as fulfilling because you know exactly what the shape is going to be before you begin turning. The only real surprise is what the wood grain will offer. I came to particularly enjoy turning fresh cut or ‘green’ thin-wall natural edge pieces. To relax the mind and allow the creative process of exploring shapes, designs and new possibilities previously envisioned is extremely rewarding. There is a wonderful surprise every time.”

Ramsey’s work can be found in numerous galleries, craft shops, in permanent collections of museums and private collections. He has exhibited in the United States, the Far East and Europe.

Ramsey is a popular and much-sought-after demonstrator and leads workshops for turning clubs and has been featured at various regional symposiums. He welcomes the opportunity to share his knowledge and skills with others. He is a member of the American Association of Woodturners, The Southern Highlands Craft Guild and the Kentucky Craft Marketing Program.

To view more of Chris Ramsey’s work, please visit his website at http://www.knot-head.com and he welcomes emails at artist@knot-head.com.

"Sports Fans"
ambrosia maple, sugar maple, turned, burned and colored
"Cascades"
Big leaf maple burl pedestal bowl
10" H by 23" W
"Cole's Mission"
Cherry natural edge, cocobolo pedestal with captured ring
19" H by 23" W
"Flamboyant Recluse"
Big leaf maple burl, turned and carved
15" H by 23" W
"Have Another Cherry"
Cherry, turned, carved and bent while drying
18" H by 12" W
"Mary's Basket"
Maple hollow form
13" H by 23" W
"Mini hat tree"
Cherry, ambrosia maple, white oak burl, spalted maple, madrone burl, walnut, holly, maple
34" H by 18" W
"Mulberry Cascade"
Mulberry natural edge pedestal bowl
12" H by 23" W
Walnut cowboy hat made for President Bush "Thorn and Sphere"
Big leaf maple burl paltter
21" H by 19" W
"White Tie Affair"
Walnut, turned and carved
13" H by 22" W
"Who's on First"
My entry for the AAW's 'Step up to the Plate" exhibit
Mahogany, ash, walnut, pink ivory, Big leaf maple burl, amboyna burl, ambrosia maple, cocobolo, cherry, elm, curley maple, purple heart
17 3/4" H by 14" W
 

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