Every item I create is made to last a lifetime. My handmade leather goods are designed to capture the beauty of the leather using traditional western designs and modern motifs. Each one brings to you the timeless qualities of the Bison…strength, beauty, and endurance.
(Photo courtesy of Eric Dusenbery)
It was an experience in the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Preserve in southwestern Oklahoma that gave Bison Ridge Leather Company its name. When I moved to Oklahoma over twenty-five years ago, I was camping in the boulder-strewn Wichita Mountains, home to free-ranging herds of elk, longhorn cattle, and bison. After banking my fire for the night and climbing into my sleeping bag, I fell asleep under a cloudless, full moon sky. Just before dawn I woke up. The moon was still shining and the ground was covered in a thin layer of frost. It was silent, except for the sound of low rumbling and an occasional explosive snort. I rolled over and saw a small herd of bison moving almost silently through my campsite. I was struck by their beauty and grace…their sense of calm confidence and power. To me, they symbolized what the American West had been and still was…strong, beautiful, and enduring. And though I live in Birmingham now, I’ve brought that Western aesthetic with me and continue to develop my art and my craft as a master leather worker using primarily bison leather.
I've heard it said that the things we surround ourselves with should look and feel beautiful. As an artist, I agree with that. I also believe they should endure. I’ve worked in various media…wood, photography, digital art…and they were all rewarding in their own way. But it was when I discovered leather work that I realized I had found the medium that really united all of my passions as a person and artist. Leather goods lend themselves to practical use, but they also look and feel beautiful. And bison leather captures the romance of the old west, but is equally at home in the boardroom as on the ranch.
Leather connects me to my love of the outdoors and the cowboy way of life, and gives me the privilege and pleasure of bringing that aesthetic to everyone I create a custom work of art for. Each book, or portfolio, knife sheath, or set of spur straps is created to last a lifetime. Each one is designed to capture the beauty of the leather using traditional western designs and modern motifs. Each one brings to you the timeless qualities of the Bison…strength, beauty, and endurance.
I will be posting the shows I will be attending as they are confirmed by the event organizers.