I am a violin maker living in Anchorage, Alaska. My name is John Osnes.
As of this year I have completed 63 celli, 137 violins, and 53 violas. I have also built several guitars, two mandolins, two Viol da Gamba and various other musical instruments.
I grew up in Everett, Washington, learning to play the violin at an early age. In 1976, I graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Chemical Engineering and stayed in that field for only two years, before switching to instrument making. At present I operate my shop in Anchorage by day and play violin in the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra, the Anchorage Opera, and other groups by night.
I have three models I work from. One is derived from the “Canon” by Guarnerius del Gesu with various modifications to suit my tastes. Body length is 14 inches and the string length is standard.
Another model I use is from the 1704 Stradivarius “Betts” violin.
The third model is based on a small Andrea Amati violin from 1566. The back is 13 3/4 inches long and the stop is 190 mm. The ribs and arching are full size resulting in a big sound.
I shade the varnish sometimes, but do no antiquing.