Last weekend’s Clark County Open Studios event, in which regional artists opened their studios for a free, self-guided art tour, reminded Washougal woodworker John Furniss of school — in a good way.
“I was working in a classroom with a group of people. I was used to chatting while I was working,” Furniss said on Saturday, Nov. 3. “It’s nice to be able to talk to people while I’m in the shop again. Otherwise, I talk to myself more than other people.”
This was a bit of a role reversal for the assumed purpose of the event, proving that an artist can benefit just as much from visitors as the guests can from seeing someone like Furniss work his craft. There were 49 other opportunities for that interaction on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 3 and Nov. 4, when artists around Southwest Washington opened the doors of their workspaces to the public for the weekend.
“I love to talk to people and learn about them. I really love these events. It gives me a chance to teach people a little bit, too,” Furniss said.
While John Furniss worked in his woodshed in the backyard, his partner, Anni Furniss, painted at an easel stationed just in front of a door that invited guests to “Come on in!”