The other day, I was telling someone that I could start a blog about all the amazing people I've met here, and I would probably never run out of people to write about. Honestly, there are some amazing stories here!
I've met animal trainers and game designers, acrobats and inventors, gold barons, poker stars and pianists, madams and magicians, and more.
Speaking of magicians, Lupe took her first class with me in the spring of 2011. Here's the first box she completed.
When she puts her mind to something, she commits herself 100% to it. When she decided it was time to learn how to build a rocking chair, she made an amazing one in Cherry.
They have travelled the world with their craft - and now run a fascinating company designing, building and selling magic props and reproduction posters to magicians. Their collection is one of the most comprehensive magic poster collections in the world.
Last summer, I had the opportunity to see their poster collection when they hosted a small brunch at their house, following their weekly bicycle excursion - and what a treat it was! Great people, wonderful connections.
Even more amazing, their poster collection includes an extremely rare original poster promoting an 1895 magic show by the well known magician, Kellar. This poster is one of eight known to exist,
and featured on the poster is a lectern table, holding a book. The table is unique and recognizable, at least in the world of magic!
When Lupe mentioned to another magician that she was studying woodworking, it was suggested that she attempt to build one of these tables, and if successful - market them to other magicians.
If nothing else - Lupe is one hell of a business woman, and she did just that - coming up with a couple of prototypes until she nailed down all of the details. This was no small feat, and she completely dedicated herself to the task, even finding a CNC shop to help with the machining of the legs, which are quite ornate.
Lupe decided to make a limited edition of twelve of these tables, and as of this writing, she's sold seven.
I highly suspect that when she gets down to the last one or two, they will be snapped up!
Here's her latest creation - a towering walnut bookcase.
This bookcase was a challenge from start to finish, and she never once soured on the piece, even though she hit a couple of rough spots on it. In my mind - that's the sign of someone who is going to be a good woodworker - how well they recover from the little slip-ups that we all experience.
After five coats of Watco and a final coat of wax, this piece looks amazing. No wonder she looks proud. And exhausted!
But - even though I've known her for almost two years now, I didn't know some of the amazing things about her life - such as the fact that she was a child star and regularly performed on TV. See! I told you she had a pretty interesting story - from being a child star to a star in the woodshop!
The February, 2013 issue of Magic Magazine featured an amazing seven page article about Lupe, and I couldn't be more proud to know her both as a student, and as a good friend. I scanned the article, and uploaded it as a PDF. You can download Lupe's article here - it's a rather large file, but offers a fascinating glimpse into her evolution from child star to woodworker.
Honestly - I couldn't be more proud of what she's accomplished!