The Process of Carving a Leaf

Some types of wood carving or sculpture require years of practice and loads of talent. Yet, aspiring artists need a place to start...a place to see if carving might be a suitable avocation. The image gallery below shows the simple steps I made using two primary tools: A jig saw to cut the pattern and a "hooked skew" carving knife. The knife shown is homemade from a bandsaw blade, but commercial models are readily available. It is one of the most versatile tools I have.

I grew up on a farm in Hickman County, TN, that has been in our family for well over 100 years. After my career with USDA, I retired here in 2002--glad to be home. I have about 15 acres of grass to mow plus 100 acres of forest. I manage my trees to favor my stand of high quality white oak, provide firewood to heat my house, give habitat to deer and wild turkeys, gain a little income as I weed and cull my trees before making a major harvest some day.

Several years ago I found a large Butternut Walnut that had matured. I had it sawed into slabs, and I saved the major limbs. It has been a convenient source of great wood for carving and sculpting. I have a couple of slide shows below that illustrate my carving process with some handmade tools. I have a good assortment of commercial tools, but my favorite tools are those I've made from a sawmill bandsaw blade.

I have a major display of my carvings at the Gallery on the Square in Centerville, TN, but the store is closed due to some water damage. Hopefully, the building's owner will settle with the insurance company and allow the store to reopen.

If you see something you would like to purchase, please contact me below. If you would like to commission a work, please send me photographs of what you want. I will review and get back to you...if it is something that I can do.

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