Woodturner Herman de Vries was born and raised on a farm in rural Manitoba, on the south shore of Lake Dauphin. His interest in working with wood began out of necessity. Needing a home desk when he began teaching and unable to afford to buy one, he simply built one using simple hand tools. That simple desk started a lifetime of working with wood. Since then the hobby has become an obsession. De Vries has never tried to produce signature pieces, preferring to produce a wide variety of work. For him, the joy of turning wood is the immediacy of the feedback he receives from watching the lines and curves form right before his eyes as the pieces turn. De Vries has been teaching woodturning classes at Lee Valley Tools since the store opened in Winnipeg and a few years ago started the Woodturners Association of Manitoba. He also started an internet site called the World of Woodturners in 2001 where some of the finest woodturners in the world are regular contributors to this free resource site for woodturners. De Vries first showed his work at the Craftspace Gallery (Manitoba Crafts Council), and since then his work has be seen at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Mermaid’s Kiss Gallery in Gimli, Poor Michael’s Bookshop in Onanole, and the North Dakota Museum of Art in Grand Forks.