I know most folks that work here at Tanner Goods, myself included, were heavily influenced by our involvement with art programs as kids. It helped shape my own interest in design, craft, and fine art, and I can say confidently I wouldn't be in the position that I am without those opportunities.
Unfortunately, art programs are some of the first that get the axe when budget cuts are announced. Many families don't have the means to supplement this by sending their kids to summer camps or after school art programs, which leaves these kids in a dire spot. This is where a small gang of Portland creatives organized under the name WeMake have stepped up and created an event to raise funds for the arts in Portland Public Schools. A cause definitely worth championing.
Yvonne from WeMake approached me a couple months back about contributing on behalf of Tanner Goods, and I was more than happy to oblige. The project was as follows: design and build a custom birdhouse in whatever medium the artist chooses, and after going on display with the rest of the lot this week as part of Design Week here in Portland, each will be auctioned off to benefit the arts program for public schools. The event is called "Put a Bird In It". Hopefully after this Portland can put that phrase to rest permanently.
My birdhouse [of sorts] is a woven leather basket. I wanted to craft something that would function outside of just being an interesting art piece, because let's be honest people...I want this thing used on a semi-regular basis and not just hanging on the wall. It's constructed from 10/11 oz natural tooling strap leather and held together with a series of brass press fit rivets and button studs.
It all wraps up this Friday at UnionPine, along with an appearance by local living legend Aaron Draplin. If you're in the area, by all means stop by, peruse the incredible creations dreamt up by the likes of Laika and Nemo, and contribute if possible to a worthy cause. We'll be there, hope to see you too.