Keith Tompkins
The Art of the Finial

A finely turned finial is perhaps the epitome of spindle turning, and a finial is the perfect finish for a hollow-form or an ornament. This presentation shows the necessary chucking methods and tool techniques required to turn beautiful, graceful finials. The demonstration will also cover the design considerations that go into creating a masterful finial.


Keith Tompkins is a trained furniture maker, as well as a wood turner. Keith’s interests have steadily evolved from making functional furniture pieces to creating unique “signature” works of art.

“As a cabinetmaker, I usually worked from a set of blueprints, building what was essentially someone else’s work. Now, when I stand in front of my lathe, I feel a sense of complete freedom to create anything I wish.”

Keith’s work has appeared in numerous publications including “The Best of Fine Woodworking”, “Wood Art Today 2”,  and “500 Wood Bowls”, and has been featured in several magazines such as “Woodturning” (UK),” American Woodturner”, “Woodturning Design”, and “American Style”.  His work has been displayed in several important exhibits and is included in many major collections. His work has garnered several awards, including five “Niche Award” finalist awards, presented at the Buyer’s Market for American Craft in Philadelphia, and the “Richard Pagano Award” for  best of show at the Northeastern Woodworkers Showcase in Saratoga, New York.

Keith has shared his enthusiasm for woodturning, demonstrating across the United States and into Canada, and at several AAW National Symposiums.