How would you define what you do?
I see my work as poetry, which requires knowledge of words and the making of sentences, which is akin to the art of engraving: grinding a stylus and engraving a simple line is like learning the alphabet. My engravings are poems, they tell stories.
How do tradition and innovation combine in your work?
I created my own personal engraving and scrimshaw style, which is well known as the Trompeter & Ritchi style. But in general it is a never-ending process of learning and developing new techniques and mixing them with traditional techniques. I aim for perfection.
© Trompeter & Ritchi
What inspires you?
Animals, wildlife, nature, music, Africa... and the craft itself. I think I do the oldest job of mankind. The oldest known art objects are carved and engraved sculptures made on mammoth ivory. Those artefacts are more than 32,000 years old.
How many knives do you produce?
Every year only a few exhibits leave the workshop. Our knives are made entirely by hand thanks to the specialised skills of various craftsmen. We often also make bespoke knives, according to our customers’ wishes.