Shadowed Earth is a creative workshop working with wood and charcoal, and is the creation of Nick.
I am a wood carver and bowl turner, with natural materials at the heart of everything I do. I have always been inspired by the natural world, and wood has always been at the core of my work. Having built and repaired boats and worked in a reclamation yard where I used reclaimed wood to make furniture, I have developed a fond relationship with the material found in the natural world around me: wood. After years of working with this versatile material, wood turning has become the focus of my creative energy, with each piece of wood naturally forming it’s own shape, depending on the direction of the grain and size of the stock.
Based in the fishing village of Newlyn in Cornwall, I work with local wood which dictates the unique nature of every bowl. The natural world inspires all of my creations in their forms, and I always source my materials locally to stay true to my ethos of coexisting with the natural world, not dominating it. I make bowls, candle holders, plant hangers, charcoal drawings and more, all from the wood around me. I don’t believe in destroying the world, so I source my wood locally from felled trees, mainly sycamore as this is plentiful in coastal areas like Cornwall.
In finishing turned bowls I opt for natural and sustainable beeswax, avoiding the addition of any harsh chemicals into the environment. For the hanging bowls I used locally sourced hemp rope, which I use traditional splicing methods as opposed to crude knots. I believe that the creation of an earthy product should not come at the expense of the world we live in or the people in it, so I use natural and sustainably sourced materials.
In being inspired by the natural world, I believe that my creations should reflect and compliment the natural world in style and quality, and so I take a simple but caring approach to all my designs. Every piece is completely unique, dependent on the shape and movement of the grain and round, and being well made, hand made and slowly made, each piece shows its own story of the creative process. Mass production will never show the work of the maker, which is why in handmade production every piece if a one off, with it’s own reflection of the tree it once came from.
I believe that beautiful objects should also be functional, which is why the pieces you see here are a range of candle holders (intended for beeswax candles), plant holders and hangers, fruit bowls and keep-sake holders. They find their beauty through age and use and make the mundane task of housing objects into one which is homely, striking and one of a kind.
Nick Henshall, the creator of Shadowed Earth