We have 8 acres of forest. Recently we had white pine cleared from the land hoping to encourage beech-sapling second-growth. A couple of windstorms knocked many newly-unprotected cherry and ash trees down. I hired a local sawyer to mill out the lumber and that is my primary source of wood. It doesn’t get any more local than that.
It starts with a chainsaw. Cut the trunks into 18-inch sections. Split the sections straight down the center.
Cut the corners off.
Mount on the lathe.
Turn to rough, thick dimension. This is the process of turning “green” wood. As it turns it flings water all over the shop, but the wood cuts easily and is a true joy. I have likened it to peeling a potato. A seventy-five pound potato.
To prevent cracking, I will “paint” the bowl-to-be with a thick coat of glue, to slow down the drying process. Even then, I lose 10-20%.
After a year or two drying, I will re-mount the bowl and turn it to it’s final thin dimension. Finish is decided based on future use, whether utilitarian or decorative. Or maybe mood.