At the age of 36, Emma Cook is one of the youngest members of the Register of Professional Turners, and one of the few professional female woodturners working within the UK.
After initially being introduced to woodturning by her uncle and her younger brother, James, she soon caught the bug that was to drive her ambition towards having her own business which could reflect her devotion to becoming a professional wood artist.
YouTube Interview with Emma Cook - filmed and edited in full by Marta Klinta
“I adore working with wood because it has a story and a soul of its own. Each piece has lived its own life and that is what makes it so unique.”
Along that journey there were wonderful opportunities to meet many talented woodturners and craftspeople who encouraged and supported her. One such person was the seated turner Tony Wilson, who took Emma as a student. He shared his enthusiasm and talents for working with wood unreservedly, inviting her along to numerous shows, and is still admired by Emma today.
In 2013, Emma established her brand and founded ‘The Tiny Turner’. The creativity she had always shown, could now be channelled into the production of singular artistic pieces of work combining all her skills of turning, painting and carving.
It was at the North of England Woodturning & Power Tool Show in 2008 that Emma was first introduced to Michael Painter - one of the few Master Carvers left in the UK. He suggested that Emma should try her hand at carving. Although initially terrified, Emma was persuaded to take lessons and once again began to develop a love of this newfound art. Many tutorials later, Emma was to complete her cherished carving of 'Errol - the Swamp Dragon'... (a much- loved feature at any event).
It was also during this time that Emma began her degree in Performance Design at Leeds University. A very challenging but ultimately highly rewarding period which saw her studying; learning the intricate skills and finesse of carving, continuing to hone her development of woodturning and working at a part-time job to support all of these interests. Exhausting to say the least, but entirely devoted to reaching her goals!
Emma continues daily to develop and diversify her ideas and talents with each new challenge, introducing a variety of skills to create unique, sophisticated pieces of art that are both admired and collected by many.