I've lately been reading the blog Paddle Making (and other canoe stuff) by Murat. It makes good reading and great viewing.
Murat, a Toronto-based blogger, makes lovely paddles that sometimes transcend mere functionality and experiment with indigenous and/or historic designs and patterns, often interpreting those influences in modern and creative ways. What's different and refreshing is that many of these "art" paddles are not like the hokey, tacky paddles with paintings of wolves or trout on the blades. I've never seen anyone actually use one of those "illustrated" paddles, and if I did, I'd probably think the less of him. I mean, if you're out in the wilderness, why the hell do you need a picture of wildlife on your paddle? But if I saw someone using one of Murat's creations, I'd only admire it, the same way I might admire a nicely-made bark canoe actually being used.
Murat doesn't confine himself to his own paddles, or to paddles at all, in his blog. He recently did a series of posts on the restoration of an old canvas canoe-pack, and he discusses other topics of interest to canoeists of a traditional or historical bent.
I'm experimenting with a new Amazon Associates feature that makes it easy to insert product links into the body of a blog post. Feel free to comment if you think the Amazon link is intrusive, not a problem, or whatever. Thanks.
Finally, this new Amazon feature seems to have made Blogger's spellchecker disappear. Until I find it again, please forgive typos. Thansk!