Will Brennan has always been, by his own admission, "a maker and a tinkerer" but it took a long time to work up the courage to turn that passion into a career.
After completing a bachelor in agribusiness and then a masters in mining engineering while he worked out at Cadia, Mr Brennan finally took the leap.
And his custom furnishings business, Will Brennan Designs, is now certainly grabbing plenty of attention.
"I used to do it in my days off," he said looking back at his love of design.
"I was always mucking around in garages with a welder and some wood-working stuff, but it probably started itching at me six or seven years ago.
"It took me a while to get the cajones up to do it, then I finally took the leap.
"I don't know what I call myself now. I'm just a maker. It's funny how life leads you on these little trails."
Originally from Warren, the Brennans moved to Orange when Will was 10. He went Kinross before moving to boarding school at Riverview for his senior years.
Being self-taught, it's about learning and picking up new ways of doing things, and just learning to run a business. I'm still learning.Will Brennan
His last formal wood-work lesson was during those school years, too.
Mr Brennan is largely self-taught, and after making his first table over a decade ago he says looking back at where it all began is a humbling experience.
"Mum and Dad still have that table, too ... unlucky for them," he laughed.
"But it's good to look back on and see the journey it's been."
That journey continues to develop, and while woodwork is his base much of his custom work now includes steel as well. His sought-after designs and tradesman-ship can be seen at places like the Union Bank, Parkview Hotel and he Omar by Academy, Orange coffee shop, to name a few.
He's worked with families to create sentimental pieces as well, the most memorable of which designing blanket boxes for the late John Hamilton's three children.
"I knew John well. We got together before he passed and designed them," Mr Brennan said.
Challenges? There's been plenty. But Mr Brennan says learning from them is the key to ensuring he continues to do what he loves.
"Being self-taught, it's about learning and picking up new ways of doing things, and just learning to run a business. I'm still learning," he said.
"I was cleaning a law firm twice a week for the first four years just to keep bills paid and things like that."
And having the support of his wife Lindsay and son Zander makes it all worth while.
Mr Brennan says he'll always have a passion for design and construction.
"And that's helped with the evolution of the business," he added.
"When you know you're going to be doing something until the day you die, who cares if you're making money or not. It's just an expensive hobby."
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