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How to find your passion in cabinet making

Grant Robinson takes everything in his stride. After all, opportunity doesn’t come to those who wait, and success always favours those who try.

He is an example of the benefits of trading one profession for the one you truly enjoy.

And, when you’re doing something you love, the results will follow…

  • AWISA John Tiddy Memorial Award for Victoria (2018)
  • Howard Lindsay Memorial Award – Outstanding Apprentice (2017)
  • Cabinet Making – Top Apprentice Third Year (2017)
  • Cabinet Making – Top Apprentice Second Year (2016)
  • Cabinet Making – Top Apprentice First Year (2015)

So, let’s have a look at Grant’s apprenticeship journey…

How was his inspiration found?

Grant knows that our best life is about freedom – freedom to explore your interests and freedom to use your time. Inspiration is found by doing, trying, or simply having a go at learning a new skill.

His creativity was formed when he studied architecture and interior design. However, it was after living in New York that Grant found perspective.

“When I came back to Australia, I took some time off to decide what I really wanted to do with my career. I thought about what I had loved doing way back in high school, before all the pressure of university was put upon me, and remembered how much I loved doing woodwork,” Grant says.

What insights did he gain after starting his apprenticeship?

Training is about gaining new skills and knowledge. However, sometimes the most important things a person can receive are beyond just what is learned.

“Just having conversations with teachers who have worked in the field for so many years, listening to their history and advice was extremely beneficial and made me even more passionate about working in the industry.”

Where does he find his greatest career reward?

Furniture making is much more than an act of creation. A piece of furniture is something that helps a house become a home. It gives an office its culture. It’s a part of a person and place.

“Furniture can tell us something about a person or a story about their lives. I was given a wooden trunk when my Grandfather passed away – it was what my family’s belongings were all in when they came to Australia from the UK around 100 years ago. Inside were documents and photos of the ship they arrived on and details about what they brought in this trunk. This trunk has been passed down through the generations and tells a story about my family’s life.”

“The fact that a piece of furniture can do something like that, I find so significant and meaningful. I want to create pieces of furniture that people will keep for a lifetime and pass down to the next generation and let it tell a story about their life,” Grant believes.

Why was cabinet making/woodwork the right decision?

Because it came from the right place. All goals are hard, but when you’re doing something for the right reason, you’ll always find your joy at the end.

“Going back to study again and doing an apprenticeship at 30+ years old was an incredibly hard decision. It wasn’t the easiest journey, especially financially, however I believed in what I was doing and just kept my eye on what my goal was from day one.”

“I believe you should never stop learning and always stay creative and push yourself to always be better. There have been a lot of opportunities present themselves recently, so who knows where this journey will lead me, so long as I’m always doing something I’m passionate about, and always remember why I started doing this in the beginning,” Grant says.

Find out more about our furniture and upholstery courses.

All information is correct at the time of printing but subject to change.

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