“Careful, it’s going to get loud”, he warns me. “That’s, alright.”
He turns on the miter saw and it’s loud as predicted.
“Do you want earmuffs?”
“DO YOU WANT EARMUFFS?”
“NO I’M GOOD.”
My ringing ears told me afterwards that I should have worn the earmuffs.
I discovered Mitz’s work after seeing one of his chairs at a client's place. I was immediately drawn to the sleek and simple design. You can see his beautiful work here.
Located in the heart of the Mile-End, his woodshop/coworking space is shared between various artists and makers. Earth tones dominate, mostly because there’s lumber everywhere, but also because anything that isn’t brown gets covered by a thick layer of sawdust anyway. Walnut, ash, maple, oak, and birch enter this little factory and gets transformed into clocks, furniture, guitars, brushes, and more.
When I met up with Mitz in the shop, for some reason, one of the first questions that came to my head was somewhat morbid.
“Have you ever had any accidents working with these machines?”
“Yeah… Chopped off my arm once.” He raises his left arm. “This arm is fake.” He might have sounded convincing if he didn’t have a massive grin lighting up his face. When you talk with Mitz, he always seems to be a second away from bursting into laughter.
I navigated through his woodshop while keeping a fair distance from the loud and sharp machines. My starting assumption is that any of these machines can and want to decapitate me.
Before I left, he gave me a scrap piece of wood. I had always been interested in woodcarving, and after receiving tools for my birthday, a little piece of walnut was all I needed to get started. Not really Mitz Takahashi pieces, but maybe in a few thousand spoons I’ll be at his level.