You probably haven’t given the woodworking world a ton of thought unless you’re following the ultimate wizard of wood, Aleksanda Zee. In that case, you are very very familiar (and probably envious) of this chic’s bada** work and down-to-earth attitude. Known for making beautifully intricate pieces of art, she has built quite the cult following on her Instagram around her unique wood masterpieces.
This gifted gal is on a one woman mission to change the art of woodworking in what's currently a male dominated field. This is no easy task but Al handles it with poise and creativity like you’ve never seen before. Working with both raw and painted redwood, her artwork is easily distinguishable and far from replicable. Her art has been commissioned for cool kid approved boutique hotel, Urban Cowboy, as well as countless influencers and followers alike.
What happens when she decides to host a workshop to share her creativity with some of her most avid admirers?
Photography by Taryn Kent
When word got around that she was hosting her first ever workshop in San Diego, tickets sold out fast. Really fast. So, when The Venue Report had the opportunity to attend this (so far) once-in-a-lifetime event, we jumped on it. We woke up on a sunny Saturday morning ready to roll up our sleeves and to get working with some wood. Hosted at The Romantik Studio owned by TVR’s longstanding confidantes, Rachel Lunghi of Lace & Likes and Kasia Mikulska of Plenty of Petals, we were excited to see their creative space first hand.
We walked into the studio decked out with a vintage tub filled to the brim with drinks, a garden cart overflowing with charcuterie necessities, fruit and pastries, and the long center work table perfectly set with our materials, decor and swag. Oh, the swag. We each received a hand printed bandana by Al, a painted leather Walter & George card case and our materials for the project at hand. *insert heart eyes here*
What were we making? Each attendee was here to create and design their own triangle to take home with them. Materials were pre-measured, cut and painted by Aleksandra so the workshopees could focus on the creative design of their triangle. We started by selecting the longest pieces of wood first and worked our way piece-by-piece to the smallest pieces of wood. After getting a quick nail gun tutorial, we were off to the wooden races.
A small frenzy ensued at the girls clamored to pick the pieces of wood that fulfilled their triangle design dreams from the array of painted black and white wood to the varying shades of raw redwood. We quickly learned that the beauty of these pieces was in the individuality and unique creativity of our selections, just like what we saw and admired in Al’s work.
Once every last piece of wood was placed, nailed down, and sanded smooth, Aleksandra opened up to this new group of woodworkers about her challenges and joys of being a female, artist, and entrepreneur both in the world of woodworking and social media. While she admits her journey is not always the easiest, creating art that people choose to be a part of their lives is why she does what she does and fuels her passion.
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