I am an amateur fiddle maker. These images above are of my first fiddle that I made. I made them under the tutelage of luthier Otis Tomas in his workshop in Cape Breton.
I received a professional development grant from the once called Scottish Arts Council to go over there for two months. I worked on the fiddle through the day and playing tunes with Otis and friends in the evenings. It was the most wonderful submerged introduction to fiddle making that anyone could ever ask for. I love this fiddle and it is my number one fiddle to play.
Since then I have made another one.. which took a good while longer than two months that is for sure... the journey was wild and bumpy... I collected pretty much all the tools I needed for the job, set up a wee workshop in our broken down campervan (see photo on Sissy Thistle Music page of it doubling as a recording studio), I had a child, broke my wrist, moved house, blaah blaah.... And finally last summer (2016) I finished it. Russell Hunter asked me to make this fiddle for him after playing my one. And the asking was praise indeed. He is a patient man.
To hear the sound of a fiddle after working on it for so long is a joy. And I am so delighted with the sound that she makes. She is beefy and sweet and beautiful.
See some photos below of Russell's fiddle.. named "Nuala".