By Justin Kelly
Woodturning is the art of turning a bare piece of wood into something useful and beautiful. Conor balances schoolwork with woodturning, but still manages to sell his products to eager customers. “My Woodturning, no matter how many orders I had, never got in the way of my schoolwork. I come home and do my homework and study, and sometimes it is 9:30 or 10:00 at night by the time I get out to the workshop, but it is my way of relaxing,” Conor said.
Woodturning takes years to perfect, and Conor’s first piece was a candleholder he made in woodwork class. “At the time the candleholder wasn’t much good, but from then on I was hooked,” Conor told us. Conor bought a woodturning lathe out of his confirmation money, and has been honing his skills ever since. Conor takes the raw piece of wood and mounts it on the lathe, and then he uses specialist tools to carefully carve and shape the wood into the products that he takes to market.
|One of Conor's handcrafted clocks|
Conor has received support the length and breadth of the country, but recognises the local support most of all: “The business people of Tullamore have been so kind to me, and my school were extremely accommodating in allowing me to sit exams later than usual, so I could attend the National Crafts and Design Fair,” Conor acknowledged. “Above all this I couldn’t let the opportunity pass without thanking my parents and brothers. They have been an incredible support to me in allowing me pursue my passion,” he added. Conor also received national prominence and notoriety in 2011, when one of his handmade bowls was presented to the then President of Ireland Mary McAleese. He also had to turn down a very large order from a Michelin star restaurant in Galway due to school commitments, but hopes to make this craft his future career.
Conor’s website www.conorlynchwoodturning.com will be up and running shortly, but he can also be contacted through Facebook by simply searching for ‘Conor Lynch Woodturning.’