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Location:
Madison
Medium:
Hand-crafted acoustic guitars
Availability:
Custom order, retail locations
FEATURED WORK
Clint Bear

“A guitar is like trying on a shoe. You have to try it out
to see if you really like it.”

Clint Bear started building acoustic guitars in 2001 after almost 35 years of playing, repairing and tinkering with electric and acoustic instruments. Today, Clint constructs guitars of various woods, scale lengths, depths from six different body styles. He names each model after a town in Jefferson County where he lives.

Now that he is retired, Clint is looking forward to building more custom guitars. While he was able to complete six to eight guitars when he was also working full-time, he estimates he now will be able to build 16 to 20 a year.

“When my guitars are played, I want the beauty of the music to attain its full potential,” Clint says.

Clint says the wood actually dictates what type of guitar it becomes. Clint tries to use as many Indiana native hardwoods as possible. He currently uses black walnut, hard maple and curly cherry. He also has several pieces of an ancient oak harvested from a sand pit in southwestern Indiana that has been estimated to be 2,000 years old.

His goal is to get more of his guitars into the boutique guitar shops where his audience shops. “Many of the people buying my guitars are semi-professional,” says Clint. “They play in coffeehouses, bars, at open mike nights. They know music and guitars.”

He also is trying to gain national attention by attending guitar and music conventions where people can actually play his instruments. Clint says networking is important, which is why he applied to the Indiana Artisan program.

“Most woodworkers don’t connect with the other arts. Indiana Artisans lets everyone know what is going on.”