Friday, August 31, 2018

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Mother with Child

Basswood carving of a young woman and child based on the Madonnina painting created by Roberto Ferruzzi (1854–1934). This piece is approximately 6 inches tall.


Small madonna statue carved from basswood. Approx. 4 inches tall.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018


Portrait carving of a pair of Pomeranian dogs.  The piece is approximately 10 inches tall, carved from basswood, finished with acrylic paints and stain, and mounted on a mahogany base.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Our Lady of Guadalupe

This carving of Our Lady of Guadalupe is carved in relief from basswood, painted, and mounted on a back board with gilt trim. It is approximately 20 inches tall. It is based on the original image from the tilma of Juan Diego that is displayed in the Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City.

Image from the tilma of Juan Diego.

Holy Spirit

Small relief carving of the Holy Spirit represented as a dove carve in basswood. The piece is approximately 3 inches in diameter.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Holy Family

Infant Jesus with Mary and Joseph carved from cherry. The carving is approximately 14 inches tall.

Sunday, August 26, 2018


Crucifix carved from basswood with stains for color. Approx. 14 inches tall.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Girl with Cat

A girl offering her cat a sniff of the flower she picked. Carved from basswood and approximately 10 inches tall.

Corporal Works Of Mercy

Corporal Works of Mercy relief carved from basswood. The carving is 42 inches tall. This piece was made for a school to act as both a work of art and as a teaching aid. For more details regarding the design and what the images represent, please see this document.

Here is a photo of the carving in its original hanging place over a bench that helps to show the scale of the piece.

Friday, August 24, 2018

Christus Rex

Christus Rex (Christ the King) carved from basswood with a mahogany cross. The cross is about 7 feet tall.

This is carving was made for a church that commissioned a large scale carving similar to a Christ the King crucifix I made many years earlier. Following is a photo of that older carving along with a series of pictures documenting the making of this carving.

This version is approximately 19 inches tall. It was carved in basswood and mounted on a mahogany cross.

In the new design sketch, you can see that the hands have been raised along with some other minor changes.

Full size cutout.

A lot of basswood.

Some of the layers (that will be glued together) have to be glued up for width first.

The layers of wood are glued together one joint at a time with lots of clamps for even pressure.

Lots of clamps! Special thanks to Roger Fischer of Fischer Woodworking. His expert assistance was invaluable.

Don't forget some wood for the arms!

Ready to start with the chisels and mallet.

 Lots of chips!

Roughed-out. A lot of wood has been removed.

Wood for the hands.

Now for some detail.

Finishing up the left hand.

Nearly done with the feet.

Applying Minwax Water-Based Wood Stain over Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner.

Applying several coats of Tung Oil to the Honduran mahogany cross.

After waxing and buffing, it's ready for installation.

Detail of head and hand.

Detail of stole and feet.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Christmas Angel

Christmas Angel carved in basswood holding a banner exclaiming "Gloria in excelsis deo." Finished with Danish oil and wax.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Blackfoot Relief

Carved from basswood. Finished with oak colored stain and wax. Approximately 4 inches tall.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Birds on Driftwood

Birds carved from cherry mounted on a driftwood base. Approximately 10 inches tall.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Big Cat

Basswood carving of a big cat imagined as an ancestor of modern jaguars. Approximately 8" tall finished with a water based stain and wax.

Saturday, August 18, 2018



Approximately 34" wide. Basswood. Water based stains and wax.

This carving depicts events and themes surrounding the annunciation narrative from the gospel of Luke. The center panel depicts the angel Gabriel appearing to Mary. On either side of this are John the Baptist proclaiming the coming of the Messiah and St. Joseph in his carpenter's shop. The far left and far right panels depict the messianic prophets Jeremiah and Isaiah.

In designing this piece, I incorporated a number of references to historical christian iconography. In the central panel, Mary is found kneeling on a prayer kneeler indicating her prayerful refection on the word. The kneeler is decorated with a lily which is a symbol of purity. Behind Mary are a pitcher and basin of water that also are used to signify purity. The angel Gabriel appears with one hand gesturing towards Mary and with his other hand he holds up two fingers indicating the human and divine nature of the child to be born. The walls of the room have cracked plaster to indicate the humble estate of Mary.

In the depiction of Joseph in his shop, Joseph is surrounded by the tools of his trade. The Holy Spirit is depicted as a dove in a cloud to convey the message Joseph received in a dream as to how Mary was found with child. Again, we have the cracked plaster on the wall.

John the Baptist is depicted standing in the waters of the Jordan river. He is wearing clothes made of camel's hair with his hand extended in a gesture of proclamation. Above him is the "Lamb of God" which he proclaims in John 1:20. The lamb is holding a banner with the Chi-Rho christogram (superimposing the first two letters in the Greek spelling of the word Christ.)

Friday, August 3, 2018

Psychology Today: Creativity, Happiness and Your Own Two Hands

"Creativity, Happiness and Your Own Two Hands" is an article on the Psychology Today site that discusses how purposeful hand use enhances well-being in a technologically saturated culture.

It reminded me of this carving by Travis Bryant.

Hopefully you are experiencing the benefits of making things with your hands. If you would like to learn about wood carving, please let me know.