While exploring deep in the hill country west of Austin, Brent came upon a storm-strewn oak trunk washed ashore on the sandy bed of a creek. The place was deserted; no home in sight, no trail to speak of. Only the charred remnants of a campfire, burnt into the curve of the oak trunk, signaled previous visitors.  But the flotsam mass itself was a wonder, and with its knotty, intricate root system and trunk still strong and intact, Brent immediately saw an extraordinary opportunity to create something special with the raw find. 

Getting it out was the question. It took the better part of a Saturday to float the trunk out of it's beached home, lift it onto a flatbed trailer and slowly haul the tree back to the Clifton Craftwork shop in Austin. The raw piece dried naturally for over a year before Brent began his work. For several weeks, he cleaned the piece with picks, compressed air, a pressure washer and shop vac, then applied ten coats of shellac and ten coats of lacquer. The final work retains the original look of the wild, with the refined touch of a craftsman. 



The driftwood bench could be a signature piece inside a

hotel lobby, museum atrium, corporate office space, private residence or restaurant entry. 


Brent Clifton