J. Alan Pipes
Zen Blowfish, Jeff's description: This is undoubtedly one of my finest creations. It was as if my hands were completely guided by a force outside themselves. The wood cooperated perfectly (anyone who works with briar knows how rare this is) and left me a pipe that has not a single visible surface flaw and has exceptional grain. The piece is clearly inspired by the spectacular work of Gotoh-san, yet my own style is overwhelmingly present within it. The design thrusts angularity and sensual curves together into a composition that could not be complete without their mutual presence. This pipe is an accomplishment that I will not soon forget.
Dewdrop, Jeff's description: Sometimes as an artist, you simply cannot trace the origin of an idea nor identify its genesis. The Dewdrop was not inspired by its namesake but instead came to be identified as one as it morphed and developed into its final self. The pipe underwent countless reconceptions, inversions, and variations before my mind finally wrapped itself around the task of its creation. Its lines, angles, rolls, and curves are manifold and so organic that the piece is difficult to explain. Instead, I will simply say that I am indeed pleased.
Blasted Dublin, Jeff's Description: This sandblasted Dublin is a workhorse pipe with unexpected grace. Its egg-shaped top profile continue through to the shank face which is capped with a generous ring of pre-ban elephant ivory. The grain on this wood simply could not have performed better in the sandblaster. I wish they all were like this; beautifully defined, deep, regular rings. To top it all off, the pipe is light as a feather.
The Genesis of J. Alan Pipes (from Jeff's website )
Like many other pipemakers before me, I began with a few hobby-grade briar blocks, preformed stems, and a few hand tools. Soon after making my first few pipes, I began to explore my creativity and technical ability by increasing the difficulty of designs and utilizing exotic hardwoods as decorative extensions and inserts. A major turn in my understanding of pipe design and engineering occurred in the summer of 2004 under the tutelage of the artisan behind STOA Briars, Todd Johnson. Todd introduced me to the Danish pipemaking tradition by helping hone my designs into more graceful, flowing creations. Additionally, acquainted me with the unique Danish drilling techniques that enable the pipemaker to fully utilize the grain of each block. This experience represented a transition point in my craft from hobby-quality to high-grade smoking pipes. After retooling my shop and acquiring better materials, I was able to combine these with the knowledge I had gained while working with Todd and increase the quality of my products.
I continue to seek consultation and criticism from collectors, experts, and fellow pipemakers. I am especially indebted to Tyler Beard, Neil Flancbaum, Jody Davis, Keith Moore, Jeff Folloder, and Jesper Klith for their time and expertise. It is because of their help that my craftsmanship and artistic sensibilities are able to continue to develop and mature. J. Alan Pipes represent a commitment to constant improvement and refinement of both design and engineering. It is my desire to make the most beautiful and best smoking pipes that I am able to create. Please feel free to browse through the showroom to see this commitment in process.
Mail: J. Alan Pipes P.O. Box 60499 San Diego, CA 92166