by Marc Adams
When you encounter true greatness it is shocking, inspiring and a bit humbling. The hair on your neck might stand on end. Your stomach might lurch like you were on a roller coaster. You might want to quit your job.
Thanks to the internet, you can see a lot of interesting work with ease. But it’s easy to forget that the vast majority of the images on your screen are of pieces that are derivative, merely acceptable in their craftsmanship and were made by people at the beginning of their journey.
Since 1993, Marc Adams has invited hundreds of the best craftsmen and women to teach at his woodworking school in Franklin, Ind., which has grown to become the country’s (if not the world’s) largest. Every year, thousands of students soak up the instruction from a who’s who list of woodworkers and artists in multiple disciplines.
Encountering this kind of greatness is also an incredibly rare experience these days.
Now Marc has selected the 30 best men and women makers that he’s worked with for his new book, “The Difference Makers: 30 Contemporary Makers; 30 Remarkable Stories.” It’s a sweeping journey into the work and lives of a diverse group of people, from pure traditional woodworkers to people whose brain is from the future. Furniture makers. Toolmakers. Luthiers. Sculptors. Engravers.
Every year, Marc has expanded the school and brought in a different mix of new instructors and veteran ones. As a result, he has figured out who is the best. He’s seen their work. He’s seen them at work.
And then there’s a gallery of the person’s work. Even if you never read a single word of “The Difference Makers,” we think you will spend hours poring over the photos.
Each chapter reads like a short biographical novel – recounting the person’s life and how they became the artisan they are today. Then Marc offers an analysis and interpretation of their work – why it’s special – and tells a few stories about what they are like in the workshop.
We are honored to have worked with Marc and the 30 outstanding people featured in this book. Collecting their stories took Marc decades. Writing it all down took more than two years. And we are proud to present it to you so you can be inspired by it for many years to come.
All of this is wrapped up in a beautiful and huge book – 11” x 11” and 260 pages long. The large and square format of the book allowed us to reproduce the images as large as possible. The book is printed on a heavy and coated #100 stock – the nicest and smoothest paper we could find. Like all our books, the pages are sewn together and bound with fiber tape so the binding will outlast you. The book is hardbound with the boards covered in cotton cloth. And the entire package is wrapped with a long-wearing full-color dust jacket. It is made in the United States (Tennessee) using domestic materials.
Artisans & Artists in the Book
Garry Knox Bennett
W. Patrick Edwards
Jeff Headley & Steve Hamilton
William “Grit” Laskin
Po Shun Leong
John Christopher White