It takes a courageous and strong person to try and make a living as an artist or craftsperson, especially in these tough economic times. You not only subject your personal work to scrutiny and critique, because there's a lot of people out there who love to give their opinion about what it is you do, yet who could never stand there and take their lumps.
You also subject yourself to the judgement of people who feel your not working an honest job, etc,etc. These people have a lot to say, but could never and will never do what you do. They just don't have the nerve, so they criticize or throw out their opinions easily, without ever trying or always making or having an excuse.
Steve Butler, star of The Garage with Steve Butler, is not one of those people. “I'm very proud of what I have achieved and will achieve,” he says. “My passion is making objects; it's what centers and drives me.”
Steve is an artist and furniture maker with more than 20 years experience in the field. In his garage workshop, he'll share with you the way to make fun, funky projects without having all the fancy expensive shop tools of the other shows. Anything from fine furniture to cool, artsy objects are what he's making. The Garage is a how-to show unlike any other.
“My work as a whole is influenced by the modern movement in furniture design,” he continues. “I love the clean lines and use of materials from that era. Lately I find myself giving new life to old materials, a resurrection of sorts; giving new life to an old object or transforming the object into something else, creating a duality in use and purpose.”
As a maker and a an educator, you are always looking for sources of inspiration and teaching aids. Steve teaches at different craft schools across the country and is always on the lookout for materials and information in places that might not seem very obvious. “I'll drop into the Salvation Army and other thrift stores at least three times a week to see if I can find some used woodworking books or an object I can use in a project. You can use the old books with the great illustrations as teaching aids. They make great hand-outs for students. They can also be very inspirational and spawn some great ideas.”
Which ultimately is what Steve hopes The Garage will do for others. “If someone goes home and makes one of my pieces, that's flattery. It's awesome. Seriously, it's the best compliment” So go ahead, check out The Garage at http://www.pegmedia.org/index.php?q=msvr/showall/611/detail, and throw some some compliments his way.