Chris Schwarz VS Paul Sellers
- This topic has 38 replies, 22 voices, and was last updated 9 years, 10 months ago by juryaan.
9 March 2013 at 5:38 pm #9084
Very well said John!!
Nice thread. I like it.
I don’t know too much about most of the folks mentioned in this thread. But, I own material from Chris Schwarz, Roy Underhill, John (now Jennie) Alexander, Peter Follansbee and, of course Paul Sellers. I see value in them all. And I’m sure you all see value in the ones you’ve mentioned.
Paul is my favorite by far. Not only for the things mentioned here in regards to his presentation, knowledge and skill. But, because of his approach to teaching you how to work wood. He’s not just letting us watch him work.
Paul is not just showing what he can do, or letting you watch him make something. He is teaching us all the fundamentals. The old adage about teaching a man to fish comes to mind.
And another point I like. Paul demonstrates that you don’t have to spend your life savings in order to build things and enjoy doing it.
Paul is passing down knowledge that might otherwise be lost very soon.
I met Paul yesterday at the Woodworking Show in Ft Worth Texas. He was just as I thought he would be …a geninuinly nice guy. Completely approachable and down to earth. Even though I was asking silly questions that he’s probably heard and answered 500 kadrillion times. 🙂 He was just as pleasant as anyone could be. And he had a few funny lines too. 🙂
And *_that_* is what’s coming across on the videos. And *_that_* is what’s making the difference, setting Paul above the others.
Just my 2 cents.
P.S. Don’t worry, I’ve got more change in my pocket and I’ll be spending it recklessly, 2 cents at at time. 🙂
Texas, USAAnonymous9 March 2013 at 10:35 pm #9090
@admin No worries, I understand what you meant and didn’t take any offense. You of course understand how soft spoken we Texans can be at times. 😉
This has actually been a really good thread that I didn’t think would go where it has. I’ve learned a lot about other woodworkers. Says a lot about the class of people we have here.10 March 2013 at 2:46 am #9095
Well said John!
This is too good of a topic to pass by so thought I would add my two cents as well. Like most of you I have or have seen numerous video’s from many other woodworkers. Some better done than others and some more entertaining than others, however they all had one thing in common it seemed to me that it was all about them. What I love so much about Paul’s teaching style is that he is one of us…much more advanced in his skills…but still one of us common folk that just loves to work with wood. He doesn’t put himself up on any pedistal, even though he could. I have now had the privalege of meeting him twice and both times he has been very engaging, entertaining and funny. This weekend in Ft Worth he discussed his belly or “relaxed muscle” as he called it as he used it to hold some wood for marking. He also miscut a rabbit (Rebate for you UK’ers) and had a good chuckle about it infront of us. I guess what I am trying to say is that Paul is real and he has a genuine desire to see you and I improve in our woodworking. The others that I have come in contact with just seem to want to make a buck or two off me by trying to sell me something.
Thank you Paul and Joseph for what you are doing. It is greatly appreciated
I feel bad that Roy has to rush through his show, I have watched a number of episodes but the speed makes me uneasy. It was Paul’s calm delivery that really caught my attention and made it look like the relaxing hobby for me. First time I saw Chris was on Roy’s show, I have seen a few Chris items but usually the content was harder to obtain when I was in the early stages of my journey but he seems like a good guy who knows his stuff. I will admit I was biased once I read the title “Buying good tools cheap” on Paul’s website.29 March 2013 at 5:13 pm #10230
Paul’s videos are very instructional and the blend of projects with tools and techniques is just right for me. I have a large collection of woodworking video, mostly older VHS, that I’ve collected over the last 20-25 years. Never counted (don’t want to really know because the next step would be to estimate how much I’d spent), but my guess would be 50 or so. Only in a very few cases have I felt like I wasted my money.
Other than the high quality of the instruction, Paul’s videos are somewhat rare in that the focus is upon the foundational skills a serious hobbyist. such as myself, can achieve with tools that are within reach. And, he uses these techniques in projects that are useful and aren’t so large or overly complex to be impractical for me. Lots of good videos out there on tools and techniques but not very many that use them with the context of a project. Example, many good dovetail videos but only a few that incorporate it into the buildings of a useful box.
The projects in this class are much more like the one week classes one can take around here. Some benefits of one-on-one are probably lost but I don’t have to devote an entire week away from work/family and I can pause and rewind. Plus, the on-line stuff is much less expensive.Anonymous29 March 2013 at 6:29 pm #10237
The form Paul’s instruction takes is excellent and well suited to training / providing a solid grounding for future professional cabinetmakers in terms of structure and the format of projects undertaken. Each aspect of hand skill building is covered and IMHO it doesn’t get much better unless taught directly in class or on a one to one basis by a highly skilled and patient craftsman.29 March 2013 at 8:47 pm #10240
I agree that Paul has fast become my favorite with his no nonsense way of working wood with just average tools that have been well tuned. I like his low key, mild manner and offers other ways to get the same results. I wish I would have had an opportunity to have met and chatted with Paul some when he was in Florida but the time was wrong.
I do like Chris Schwarz as well as Roy Underhill who I have met a few times, but Pauls approach and style is first class and for me is easier to understand. I certainly am enjoying what he and Joseph and the whole team is and has done.
Steve Massie, I live in the great State of Florida, US
And while I can’t take classes, I feel like I’ve bought every woodworking DVD produced in the last 20 years – Sellers, Charlesworth, Cosman, Schwartz, Tom Law, Kingshott, Klausz, etc.
Very nicely described. My experience is somewhat like yours. I’ve watched many DVDs and some changed things for me completely. As you said, Charlesworth’s stuff can be watched, copied, and made to work and it got me going when I was stuck on sharpening with no one to show me. His methods still give me the sharpest edges, but man oh man the price you have to pay in time to get there! Paul’s is so much faster. Schwarz’ changed things because he was the first person to tell me I was an idiot. Well said and true! He pointed out that sometimes you cut to get in the ballpark of your goal, sometimes to get closer, and sometimes with great precision and they are a progression to get you to the end. For example, you rip to get close, then use the plane to refine it. That’s where I learned to put a 9″ camber on a #5 blade and use it to hog off wood like Paul shows in one of his videos. Wood flies everywhere. It’s great fun. Maybe some day I’ll be able to control the fun to land at my dimension lines. He taught me that planes aren’t always meant for fluffy shavings and sawing exactly to the line isn’t always the goal but sometimes just to pave the way for refining later.
I wish there were some Tage Frid videos just because I’d have liked to see him work. His books are very detailed and clear. He wrote one of my favorite woodworking lines (paraphrasing): “This joint is very easy to make, especially after you screw it up a dozen times.”
But, of all of these series, Paul’s is the only one that is a curriculum for working wood.30 March 2013 at 2:09 am #10258
Ed, Fine Woodworking sells a Tage Frid video.
Memphis, TennesseeAnonymous30 March 2013 at 5:07 pm #10302
“This joint is very easy to make, especially after you screw it up a dozen times.”
This has to be one of my all time favourite quotes as it’s so close to the truth. 😀 I think as learners – we’ve all been there – it’s all too easy to grow impatient and frustrated when failure sneaks up on us time and again, until we finally succeed. This is where a good teacher is especially important, as – while we’re still liable to suffer a number of failures – it becomes possible to uncover the reason behind mistakes and how to remedy them. 🙂
I think Paul is such a capable teacher.
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