Ask Shawn Zotynia about when he started woodworking and his answer, without hesitation, is 1984. Although what the project was or why he can recall that year, he can’t say. He was still in school, he did say, adding, “It’s just like anything else, you just keep doing it.”
Shawn knows wood; he has his own logging business that keeps him busy in the winter months pretty much from dawn to dusk in the Maine woods. After all, that’s where the lumber comes from, and someone has to go in and bring it out. That work also produced the numerous contacts with local mills that aid Shawn in finding the quality wood he uses to create his furniture.
Shawn says designing a piece usually takes the most effort for not only must it meet the needs and desires of the customer but also his own drive to make heirloom-quality works that will withstand the test of time and use. His knowledge of wood means the finished piece will showcase the chosen wood. For instance, the curved drawer fronts of the bathroom sink that Shawn built from flame birch were all hand sawn from the same board, something readily visible in the grain pattern of the finished product.
Shawn’s furniture business is a one-man show. He’s the one taking the order, finding the wood and even emailing photos of the wood to see if it’s what the customer wants. It’s a testament to his attention to detail, something you also see in each piece of furniture he designs and builds.
You probably can’t pin him down on a favorite piece or a favorite type of wood. If you look at his work featured in the Gallery, you’ll see Shawn is versatile and adaptable, tackling a range of pieces from accent tables to grandfather clocks to bedsteads. And those are just some of the works Shawn has designed and built over the years. Since 1984, for the record.
Want to query Shawn about a commission? Here’s his contact information.