Todd Young never thought of himself as an artist until a good friend and fellow musician set him straight. Up until then, he considered himself a woodworker and a maker. But his work stood out and his process was inspired by a need to collaborate with the natural element rather than dominate it. With the realization that he was making art, Todd began to thrive creatively, and his wood work was coaxed into its fullest expression transcending function and craft.
Todd has an innate understanding that the natural lines and grain in a single piece of wood can and should lead the design process. The results are unusual and organic one-of-kind shaped pieces that celebrate irregularities and natural colors. His cutting and presentation boards are as much sculptural works as they are functional pieces and are designed to hang as art when not in use.
Todd’s boards are made from ethically harvested local woods of Walnut, Cherry, Sugar Maple, Locust and Sycamore. Giving fallen and dead trees new purpose and life is one of his greatest joys. The process begins by cutting logs and branches into flitches or rough slabs and then sets them aside for a year of slow air-drying. Next, he designs the board and hand draws the shapes to preserve and highlight the wood’s naturally unique characteristics. Then the shapes are cut, sanded and seasoned to provide a beautiful and protective finish for a lifetime of use. Todd now considers himself a full-time artist and works from his studio, Living Edge Designs, in Rhinebeck.