Simon CraftsVanlue, OH
….”my idea is teaching details and methods as the kite itself is rather simple. The goal is to have the participants leave the workshop as better kite makers armed with more skills, not just a new kite."
Simon spends his time as a master sheep herder. He's been banned from using glue since the kindergarten tragedy of '71 so he uses a proprietary technique of using acacia gum and spit as adhesive in his kites....or....Simon was born and raised in St. Louis, MO. He has a BS Degree in Mining Engineering from the University of Missouri – Rolla. He has lived and worked in Southern California, North Texas, Iowa, and now resides near Findlay, OH where he is a key member of the Engineering Department for a limestone aggregates producer.
Simon has been flying kites as long as he can remember, spending many, many hours flying kites with the other kids in the neighborhood as a child. As an adult, he discovered “modern” sewn kites while on a beach in San Diego and bought a few to play with his (then) young sons. He was re-bitten and has been flying again ever since.
Simon began making kites in 2008. He basically learned everything he knows by reading and communicating on-line, particularly through the forum on Kitebuilder.com, and through the practice of making kites, Simon concentrates his efforts on his own designs and shapes – almost always starting with a “blank” plan and writing one rather than following one. His forte is with cellular kites, enjoying the much greater possibilities that 3 dimensions allow.
Simon attended his first AKA Convention in 2011 (Wildwood, NJ) where he participated in his first kite making competition as a Novice, having never been around a competition previously. He left with an un-precedented 8 first place trophies, including the Member’s Choice award and the Grand National Championship for his cellular kite “Extensivity” – which also won the trophies for highest scores in Visual Appeal, Structural Design, and Craftsmanship.
Simon attended his first kite making workshop in 2011 – as an instructor – teaching his original Gizmo design. He has taught numerous workshops including at Fort Worden Kitemakers Conference, Upper Midwest Area Kitemaking Event as well as local workshops.