Why did you choose this job?
As far as I can remember it wasn’t obvious at first, but here I am! Wood is a material that I really like. I have cousins who had sawmills, and many members of my family worked with wood, so it simply came about naturally.
Do you train apprentices like your father did?
Yes, regularly. I had one who was awarded the title of best apprentice in France. I also take on many interns from schools at least three times a year, people studying different woodwork techniques at various levels.
F. Richard © E.Joussot
What surprises people most about your work?
That you can take a piece of wood, work it, and it's no longer a piece of wood! In fact, when people see a simple plank of wood, they find it hard to imagine that this can really be our raw material. A while ago, I made a piece of furniture from walnut. When I told the client what it was made from he couldn’t believe it.
Do you master specific techniques?
Turning round and oval frames. I am the last and only manufacturer of this kind in Europe. In contrast to a traditional lathe, wood is turned in an oval movement. We make different size frames. Miniature frames measuring 2cm in diameter to monumental frames as large as 2m50 in circumference.