Meet the maker
Back in the summer of 2014 I started making small leather items such as bracelets, key fobs and belts. One day I got an idea: “Wouldn’t it be cool to make a bullwhip to put on the wall?”.
It sure would.
That simple thought was the start of a long and ongoing journey. After a lot of research, trial and error I managed to finish my first few whips. They where not pretty but I was intrigued by the sophistication needed to build such a (by the looks of it) simple thing.
So I set off on a quest to learn more about whips and how to make them. Bought a bunch of books and studied, picked the brains of world renowned whipmakers and even ventured somewhat into science.
Whips are a lot like paintings, every artist has his or hers own style and even tho their style might be similar to others, there are always differences developed over time that makes each artist and maker unique.
The whips I make have a smooth roll out, are responsive and crack effortlessly. A good whip should do the job for you and there should be no need to use excessive force to produce a solid crack.
In addition to that they all have smooth and tight plaiting for a slick look and feel. A tight and smooth braid is also key for a responsive whip with minimal air drag.
Let it be known that making a high quality whip is not easy. It costs thousands of hours of frustration, pain and grief. But it is also very rewarding.
It takes many hours to build each whip and spending that amount of time methodically working on every layer creates a connection between me and every single whip I make. When finished it is time for the new owner to get to know and form his or hers own bond with the whip.
Using my hands to create functional works of art and to have that art bring so much joy to others is what it’s all about.
– Johnny Öhgren
Whipmaker & Owner of Witchcraft Whips