Paul spent a large part of his working life in the USA where he began teaching woodworking, the craft he learned through a traditional apprenticeship, to others through short courses. He taught his first course in 1989 for the Texas Arts and Crafts Foundation. This led him to create a structured training program for others to master hand tool skills.

Wanting to reach as many people as he could, taking his classes online meant he could use his decades of experience to teach woodworkers all across the globe. Woodworking Masterclasses has a variety of projects which vary in skill level that make it accessible for many, but not all. Feeling like the beginner woodworkers needed more guidance and specific projects, Paul and his team started up Common Woodworking which focuses purely on beginners starting off their woodworking journey.