Disability Pride Month Feature: Laura Durrant of Fearless Wood Turning

As Disability Pride Month comes to a close, we’re wrapping up our series featuring local artisans with disabilities with this week’s highlighted artist: local wood turner, Laura Durrant. We spoke with Laura about her passion for woodturning. You can read the full interview below:

What is your medium and how long have you been creating?

I have been doing my lathe work (wood work) for a bit over six years now.

Was there anything that drew you to woodworking specifically over other physical mediums like sculpting?

I really enjoy the smells of the wood while I’m turning it. I also love the fact that I can take a block or chunk of wood and turn it into something beautiful.

What inspires you to create?

Well it’s really not just one thing. Mostly I try to challenge myself and the limits of my tools / vision. 

On your website, you wrote: “I create to show others that you can work through your struggles and push forward.” Is that why you called your business Fearless Wood Turning?

You see, I have to do my work by touch (how I was trained) or I could get seriously injured. The name was also inspired by a gift my oldest daughter gave me. The gift was made from wood and said “I am fearless”. It came to represent all the struggles I face and overcome each day.

The colors and designs you work with in your pens and pipes are beautiful! Can you tell us a little bit about your wood turning process, but also your design process?

When I put something on the lathe – many times I don’t have any idea what design or shape it will end up. I figure that out as I go. The process is arduous. I have to stop often to feel the piece. That is when it speaks to me.

Can you tell us about the first time you worked with wood, and did you fall in love with it immediately? Or did that passion come gradually as you worked at it?

I started “whittling” on pieces of wood as a teen. I really enjoyed that and wood burning. But I didn’t truly fall in love with woodworking until my woodshop class at the Utah Division of Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired. If I had never been a student at [DSBVI], I would never have found it.

How can our audience best support you?

By giving me positive feedback, following me on social media and sharing my work with others to help get my name out there.

What can people expect to see from you at DIY Fest?

Fun new pieces for people to get their hands on and check out.


Support Laura by visiting her website and following her at @fearlesswoodturning on Instagram and Facebook.

Craft Lake City’s artist features highlighting national DEI Awareness Months will continue throughout the year on our social media channels (@craftlakecity) and here on our blog. Stay tuned to hear from other local creatives working to make Utah a more vibrant and accepting place to live, work and create!