Randy P. Goodman
Woodworking and service are both built into the very heart of Random 8 Woodworks because they’re very much a part of me.
My grandfather, John Phillip Goodman II, was the start of it all. He was a gifted electrical engineer, who as family lore tells us, worked on the very first rover that went to the moon, a veteran of both the US Army and Navy, and a woodworker. My father, John III, also served in the US Army and learned a great deal of the woodworking craft from his father and mastered his skill working for 38 years as a union carpenter. Just like my dad, I can remember picking up little bits and pieces of the trade at a very young age. I took my first job in a custom wood shop at the age of fourteen.
Mark Weaver gave me a chance to turn my passion into a trade by letting me work as a helper in his local furniture shop. I was completely blown away with my exposure to his bent laminations and free form design. My imagination ran wild! To see how he achieved these shapes and forms completely transformed my outlook on the craft and what it could be.
I took that experience with me when I joined Mr. Steve Rode, Sr. This gentleman was not only an incredibly skilled carpenter, but he was well respected and for good reason. Mr. Rode conducted himself as a true professional in turn teaching me everything about business ethics and providing the understanding that I owe it not only to the customer but myself to adhere to incredibly high standards in craftsmanship.
When I was old enough, it was important to me to follow in the footsteps of my family. I served in the United States Marine Corps with Fox Company 2/2. The training and discipline I received were second to none. I was able to take all of my experience with woodworking, and add the knowledge of honor, morals, and values in a way that only the Corps can teach you. My service took everything I had learned and raised it to a higher level.
During my time in the Marine Corps, I also learned a great deal of rope skills. The climbing and rappelling gave me the unique opportunity to work as an arborist and climber with Tree Awareness after my service. It was my privilege to work directly with another incredible teacher, Paul Biester.
Sure, I could look at a slab of wood and envision a beautiful table or chair, but Paul taught me about the trees these pieces came from. Species identification, understanding the stresses and movements within a tree, and perhaps most importantly why they occur. Rooted deep in the ground, drying in a kiln, or laying on the rack waiting to be cut, wood is a living thing. No matter what you do, wood always wants to move, swell, and contract. I believe that my time climbing, pruning, and cutting down trees helped me gain a solid understanding of wood and its intention to move. I ascertained how to manipulate that and use it by observing grain direction and skillfully placing cuts to strengthen a piece rather than weaken it.
I started a finish carpentry business that became very successful over seven years. As request grew over time for fine furniture and built ins, I decided to officially open a commercial wood shop. It hasn’t been easy, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
That’s the story of Random 8 Woodworks. We’re an independent, veteran owned wood shop that specializes in building beautiful, handcrafted fine furniture. If you’re interested in a piece of furniture that will last a lifetime, know that we’re looking forward to putting our passion into giving you a treasure that you, and all of us here, will be proud of.