Hi, I’m Chris Altman, a “Garage Woodworker” currently living in Phoenix, Arizona with my wife, Erica. I moved here from Arlington, Texas in July of 2007 and I love it!! Not that I didn’t like Texas.
I grew up in Arlington. Going to high school at Arlington High (where I met my future wife – more on that later) and was always interested in making things with my hands. My interest in Electrical Engineering led me to UT for a year, where I realized that even though I enjoyed engineering, I didn’t want to be one. Years passed and I found myself at a small custom home electronics shop designing ultra-high-end residential audio/video/control systems. I was there from 1997 to 2007. Among growing friendships and meeting great people, this fostered my love for hands-on work all while balancing that with a firm understanding of managing and encouraging people for the success of the company. All this led to a realization that my love for hands-on work and creating things was an aspect I wanted to keep in my life, but not something that I wanted to do for a living. So I started assembling my woodshop.
At first I just cut wood and glued it together, trying to gain knowledge just from the experience. I got better at it and people started asking me to make things for them. This is where I found out I had a real love for design. Interested in Modern design, I engulfed myself in catalogs, books, and internet sites relative to the process. I drew furniture, housing, and living space just to see how much cool stuff I could think of. I mixed this with my woodworking and made a few things – a bed, a nightstand, a electronics rack – refining my woodworking skills with each piece – allowing me to build the next.
Other parts of my life were changing as well. In the summer of 2005 at my 10 year high school reunion, I met Erica, again. We had dated shortly in high school many years back and aparently there was still a little spark between us. Unfortunately she had just moved to Phoenix. We felt enough for each other to keep in touch. Her business travels brought her back to Arlington on occasion and I eventually made a trip out to Phoenix. After two years of long-distance dating, seeing each other about every 2 weeks, we made the decision to live together. That meant me moving to Phoenix. I Felt it was also time for a relationship change and we became engaged. After living in Phoenix for a year and getting married in May, I can truthfully say I love it here.
Erica has been pivotal in my life.