microcelebrity spotting: Keith Burtis the Woodturner

UPDATE: Keith recently opened an Etsy store where you can purchase his wood work!

Last evening Shady and I went down to the 2nd Buffalo Tweetup, partly because we were meeting a new twitter / developer friend there, Joseph Hsu.

Organized at the Pearl Street Grill & Brewery, I got to meet Keith Burtis at the Tweetup again, who lets me know how far he’s gone with his woodturning art. Apparently he’s become quite a microcelebrity, with his blog, twitter and live shows of his woodturning sessions. He would often give out his work to viewers, which was in line with his mantra of being without attachment in life. I told him how he’s adopted a Buddhist thinking, where one finds contentment from within, not external source (at least that’s what I know).

If you’re wondering what woodturning is, according to Wikipedia (aka our alpha version of the hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy)…

Woodturning is a form of woodworking that is used to create wooden objects on a lathe. Woodturning differs from most other forms of woodworking in that the wood is moving while a (relatively) stationary tool is used to cut and shape it. Many intricate shapes and designs can be made by turning wood.

As a fan of The 7th Son, Keith recently made a special gift to his favorite Sci-fi writer / podcaster, J.C. Hutchins. The 7th Son is an amazing podcast novel which has gained quite a following, and is a thriller centered around the concept of clones. J.C. surprised Keith by making an unboxing video of his package, which immediately made me see the power of passionate producers when they happen to be fans of each other’s work. It made me realize how this brings fans over as well, much like how comic book crossovers used to work in the early days (see DC vs. Marvel).

Keith will be on traveling over summer, giving talks and sharing tips with artists on how they can use social media to further their work, and gain fans as well as customers for their business. He’s set to give at talk at the upcoming Podcamp Boston. I remarked at the Tweetup group on how Clay Shirky’s “Here Comes Everybody” fits into what’s happening today, as we’re really starting to realize how social technology only gets interesting when the non-techies start using it.

The unexpected relationships between traditional non-tech related work and social media is something most people fail to see the connect, yet is a milieu holds the an incredible untapped potential. In line with my recent social media strategist interviews, there is a general disbelief that it would work, when social media is actually quite agnostic to content genres, particularly non-tech related ones. As Jeremiah Owyang once answered me on how lifecasting could possibly make money, he said that as long “as it’s interesting, it’ll work”.

Are we live?
Original 4Chan image found on Liz’s wall…

Aside: As you can tell by now, I’m now able to videocast live anytime any place. I’ve got a Nokia E51 for review, and Daniel Brusilovsky provided me a Qik.com account for mobile video streaming.

3 thoughts on “microcelebrity spotting: Keith Burtis the Woodturner

  1. Kevin, Thanks so much for the review of my woodturning show. As we disussed last night, there is a record feature on BlogTV. However, i forgot to push it! So i will be streaming live again tomorrow to make up for the small screw up — heck maybe even turn live again toninght .. we’ll see. Anyhow, thank you again for the wonderful post,and i can vouch that if anyone needs a social media strategist, keving is your man!
    Keith Burtis

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