I met Ben over 20 years ago in Maine. I lived there with my parents while I was being home schooled for a number of years. I remember we used to pretend to be cowboys running through the woods, building forts and thinking we were all around Clint Eastwood type characters, though at the time I think we only were reading books hearing stories about the wild west.
Ben and I went our separate ways but always stayed in touch regardless of distance. Every time we would see each other again it was like nothing had changed, no time had passed. He began showing me his passion for knife making. the skills he had acquired and tools he had filling up this workshop deep in the woods. I visited him a few times over the years and each time I could see the growth and love for his work growing and not to mention that I was in awe of the detail and skill he had to construct beautiful hunting, kitchen and pocket folding knives that were always at different stages of being built throughout his workshop.
Ben Breda immediately came to mind for this story. A man who is the real deal, self made and working in a masculine, musky studio surrounded by nature filled with machines that looked like they were pulled off an oil rig or tank. His drive to improve and keep gaining insight and skills to keep building and selling master pieces is impressive and insightful to any artist. Knowing him since childhood and how he has evolved into who he is today, I thought he was perfect for this post.
Ben Breda’s knife shop and home are located in rural Midcoast Maine. He built his shop and began making knives in 2012. Ben got his start at the New England School of Metalwork in Auburn Maine. In 2014 he received his Journeyman bladesmith rating through the American Bladesmith Society. Ben is an award winning bladesmith and has been a full-time maker since 2016. All of the work is done in house. He specializes in both custom fixed blades and folding knives that are forged, ground, and finished by hand from raw materials.
Nick Turner is an American artist and photographer born in Boston in 1983. He was raised in the countryside of Maine where he was home-schooled until the age of fifteen, when he moved to the South of France. There, he attended a French high school before moving to Toulouse, where he passed his international baccalaureate. Immediately after receiving his diploma, Turner moved to Paris. He relocated to New York City to attend the Parsons School of Design, where he received a bachelor’s degree in Illustration.