Television network INSP will premiere “Handcrafted America” in March, an original series of 13 episodes featuring artisans who make functional work predominately from wood.
The premise of the show has host Jill Wagner (Teen Wolf, Wipeout) traveling the country on a quest to find talented men and women who make extraordinary items by hand. In every half-hour episode, Wagner meets three craftspeople and gets a behind-the-scenes look at their handiwork, as well as the process of conception and design. Along the way, viewers learn about the history and cultural heritage that inspire and influence each creation.
INSP airs dramas and “inspiring stories celebrating the American spirit and honoring timeless traditional values,” according to the network.
“This show falls in line with the common thread in our programming that goes to people who make a conscious decision to have simple way of life, like “Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman” and “Little House on the Prairie,” says Craig Miller, the network’s vice president of original programming. “So we think that a show about artisans and craftspeople that make things by hand fits right in with that theme and that viewers will appreciate seeing real people doing some of the same things our characters do,” Miller says.
The show is co-produced by Susie Films, a television production company based in Charlotte, N.C., which selects the artisans.
“In terms of artisans who make things out of wood, we have everything from guitar makers, pens, sunglasses, longbows and surfboards. Half of the artisans make something out of wood in some way, shape or form. A few more incorporate wood in their work.”
Some of the woodworkers in the series include Wayne Henderson of Wayne Henderson Guitars in Rugby, Va.; Scott Woody of Woody’s Chair Shop in Spruce Pine, N.C.; Melissa and Scott Coleman of La Puerta Originals in Santa Fe, N.M.; Chuck Jacobi of Best Billiards in Pittstown, N.C.; Cody DuMont of Tenbrook Archery Longbows in Santa Cruz, Calif.
For information, visit www.insp.com.
This article originally appeared in the January 2016 issue.