I’m your On-Call Craftsman for Personalized Woodworking Projects
From anywhere in the USA and beyond, you can call on Fishers Laser Carvers for
laser engraved and hand made wood plaques,
wood gifts and
Get in touch with me at my woodworking shop in Fishers, Indiana today at:
I have always loved wood and words. I have been making things in wood for as long as I
remember. I was always cutting or sanding a piece of wood for something, drawn by the
craft of woodworking and the many lessons it teaches. I remember one time I was making
wall scones as a boy with my father and he had given me the task of buffing out the finish
coat with steel wool and applying the next coat of shellac so it would be dry by the time
he got home from work. Well, some friends came by with a basketball (basketball is a
religion in Indiana) and I wanted to go play. I quickly buffed the work, slapped on a
finish and off I went, basketball under my arm. I returned home to find my father waiting
and holding the wall scones with a scowl on his face. I had neglected to use a tack cloth
and remove all of the little steel wool fibers. I simply finished over them, leaving ugly
black steel fibers in the corners embedded in the now dried shellac. I had to work well
into the night to remove all of the finish and start over. I have never forgotten that
lesson. Just recently I was rushing to finish a project and stopped and remembered to
make sure all steps were completed. “There is a reason it is called the finish,” my
father would say. We use suar wood at times too.
My great uncle Walter was an old time cabinetmaker who had a cabinet shop in Rushville,
Indiana. I used to love to visit his shop as a boy and see all these wonderful and sharp
tools. He would pick up a hand plane and examine it, letting the light catch and dance
along the edge and then with a quick flick of his thumb (he had a tattoo of an anchor on
that thumb from the Merchant Marines which made him seem more magical) to check for sharp,
he would drag the plane across a piece of wood. The plane made a soft whish sound and thin
ribbons of wood would fly from the mouth of the plane and land like little girl’s curls
on the floor. I was transfixed by what appeared to me to be the most amazing thing I had
ever seen. I knew this was something I had to do.
The church was an important part of my life growing up. I decided to study religion and
ministry. I received a scholarship from Butler University to study fine arts and theology,
so off I went. In school I discovered words. The words of Blake, Thoreau, Emerson,
Jefferson, Merton and Jung and other great thinkers of our time spoke to me. I could not
get enough or read enough. I was studying wisdom. The answers I thought were in the
scriptures and the words of poets and musicians. Keep in mind this was the late 60’s and
early 70’s and answers were sorely needed. While in school I held various jobs as students
often do and one was selling woodworking tools. I had a customer named Herb Wright, an
old man who constantly asked me to come by and visit his shop. It was on my way to school
so I stopped and began a long relationship about wood and woodworking. It was a perfect
mentoring program. He had decades of knowledge and all of these tools but his eyesight
and hand strength was failing. I had none of the resources but I had the youthful strength
and thirst for knowledge. We built my daughter’s first bed together. He taught me much.
There were education bills to pay, children to rear and homes to build. I was offered
a position with a large corporation and I needed the money and so a 30-year career in
corporate America began. Quite unintended actually; it just happened. I reached the level
of division management where I traveled extensively throughout this great land while
leading and managing a fairly large business unit. All the while, there was still the
call to making. Every spare minute was spent in pursuing, even if only in knowledge,
In 1977 I read a book called A Cabinetmakers Notebook by James Krenov. It was not a
how-to book but rather a book about how he felt while making and the reasons for making.
It was an epiphany for me. The words of wisdom I had studied and the words of woodworking
now seemed to be the same. Mr. Krenov showed pictures of wooden planes he had made and
shaped to fit his hands in his book. I made my first plane over 25 years ago and I have
never stopped, constantly dreaming of a day when maybe, I could really pursue my first
A serious heart attack ended my ability to travel constantly. I am only here by the
grace of God and about seven minutes. I was offered the very rare opportunity to take
early retirement. Fate, frugality and decades of investing had left us in the fortunate
position to seize this opportunity. I wanted to find a way to fund my woodworking
pursuits. I became interested in laser technology and I was thinking that maybe by
engraving cell phones and mp3 players I could help fund my further pursuits of woodworking.
I used that last bonus check to purchase a laser. The representative who delivered the
machine said, “Let’s fire it up”. I looked around my little shop and picked up a little
scrap of cherry. We quickly scripted Follow your Bliss by Joseph Campbell and laser
etched this onto this piece of wood. The rep commented, “That looks pretty good!” I
replied, “Yes it does!” The concept for Fishers Laser Carvers was born that day.
This is the result of a lifetime of pursuit. It is in fact a dream coming into reality.
It is my intention to continue my journey into the craft of woodworking and combine the
wisdom of words with the sensitivity and spirit of craft and share it with you here. I
desire to spend the rest of my life, however long that is, making simple things that may
uplift or bring a bit of joy to others and share my joy and passion with you. I hope you
find this a friendly and uplifting place to visit. I hope you find something intensely
personal here to own. Mostly I hope you find items to purchase that bring you peace.
George Beck, Fishers Laser Carvers
Have questions about my laser engraving or woodworking? Call me at (317) 845-0500!
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