Unhurried. That’s how I build my guitars. They first take shape behind the eyelids, in that limitless expanse of possibility. Once upon a notion, I sought to build the first one, and quite imperceptibly that notion became a pursuit of passion in all those that followed. I build my guitars unhurried. They contain my thoughts. As songs or poems do for others. The images arrive as if through mist, milky-grey imaginary figments. Step by step, I select my materials. They are fairly traditional – spruce, cedar, rosewood, sycamore, mahogany, ebony – nothing too fancy. Oh, and silver, too. I used to make jewellery. In that previous life of mine, silver was most often a regular companion. Then there is amber, and all that jazz. With some help of friendly jewellers, I try now to intertwine my old life and this new one. Wood and metal, wood and stone, wood and amber. A new chapter. Limitless expanse of possibility.
Sergiusz Stańczuk it's me. […] I am not without flaws. One of them is that I hate cleaning up. I take that after my beloved Master. I have learned to navigate among discarded pieces of equipment, planes, chisels and tubes of glue that just lie around, everything that I had no time to put in its right place. I can weave my way through that disarray, trusting that my inner (and unpaid) cleaning lady will one day unclutter that space for me. Despite the ubiquitous untidiness I can find anything and I never waste time tracking any necessary tools, because I keep almost all of them handy almost all of the time. Limitless expanse of possibility.
Another thing I am not too fond of is sharpening my tools. Before I commit myself to another instrument waiting to be made, I always set aside a full day for that particular chore. No craftsman can overestimate the value of a sharp tool and that’s the only reason I do it. Once it is done, work becomes pleasure and the processed material yields without a fight. To live to feel the pleasure I must survive that day when tools are being sharpened and machines (few as they are) calibrated and cleaned. Once my Master (we used to live under one roof for over ten years) gave me a knife as a birthday present. Handcrafted by Himself, hilted with exotic timber, I have it to this very day. When I sit down to sharpen that knife, I recall the day I got it. And I try to think of what connects me to that object, which can be so much of a nuisance at times like this. Years later I returned the favour with a similar knife. I gave it a hilt of ebony, black as night, to commemorate all those late-and-early hours we spent in the workshop. The blade was cut from the same piece of steel. For apart from instruments, I enjoy knifemaking, too. Limitless expanse of possibility.
Children dream they can shape the future. And so do I. Some people fish, others charm their luck in casinos, there are those who go ice-skating and others who put their trust in a length of cord to jump out of an airplane. I lock myself, with a dog to keep me company, in my workshop to build a future for someone. And for me. Each of the instruments brings new inspirations. I find mine, you find yours. Limitless expanse of possibility.
Sometimes when I look upon the works of my fellow luthiers, I envy them, because they can spend time in their workshops doing what I do: objects of beauty. I wish you can find your own haven to work miracles therein. In particular those miracles that are inside each of us. If my work helps you achieve that – another one happens. [...]
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