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Russ Riddle Designs

Artist directory :: Russ Riddle Designs

Creative studio furniture designs made by hand in Washington with rare local woods, marquetry and inlay.

Russ Riddle Designs

About

Russ Riddle Designs 
I am a largely self-taught woodworker. I grew up loving to build things and exploring the natural world. I made my first furniture when I was 12, but my interest in nature diverted my career path in other directions. While I made many pieces of furniture through the years, I did not start making and selling gallery and custom woodwork until I retired. Since 2005 I have sold my art in many galleries around Washington, in a variety of art shows, and directly to customers in Washington, California and Japan.

Galleries

Trees of Harmony Tables with extraordinary burl slab tops and sculpted bases. Use as entry, console or pedestal table. (See blog for more info)
Cabinets Free standing and wall cabinets
Asian Inspired Tables Three styles of Asian inspired tables
Asian Inspired Tables and More Tables with marquetry or inlay
Ginkgo Tables Furniture with a Ginkgo theme
Console Tables Entry way, hall way, and sofa tables
Other Tables Tables in a variety of styles and sizes.
Natural Edges Furniture with a natural or "live" edge.

Blog

Rosette Table
I made this table a couple of years ago but didn’t get around to writing about it because of health issues. It came about because I had been thinking about doing something to do with a marine theme and also something “op artish.” I wondered if the wood textures would add or subtract from the figure and if there would be enough contrast. Sprials are fascinating and beautiful and all over the biological world.

Trees of Harmony
I am excited to be introducing my newest work at the 2017 Camano Arts Association Studio Tour on Camano Island on Mother’s Day Weekend (May 12-14) and the following weekend (May 20-21). I call this series of tables Trees of Harmony . I took a more sculptural approach with these tables than in my previous work, departing from the usual furniture pattern of four legs, apron, symmetry, etc.

Natural edges and Spalted Wood
I’ve said before that my furniture is about the wood. Many of my pieces have “imperfections,” such as knots, that would not be acceptable in mass produced furniture that seeks uniformity, not to mention special figure, burl and sapwood. These properties make the piece speak of its natural origins.

Using inlay and marquetry
Inlay and marquetry can be an extremely effective method of drawing attention and creating focus, and most importantly for me as designer, a visual reference or context in which to design the piece. It seems like a traditional use of inlays in furniture was simply to make a piece less plain, such as adding a border of Acanthus leaves might do. I haven’t used inlay in this way for a couple of reasons.

Inspirations
Furniture design is an abstract art form. I don’t approach it in a “non-objective” way, though. I mean, I don’t try to assemble “elements” of lines, shapes, colors, textures, etc., to make a pleasing composition without any reference to the real world.

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