Mohawk Valley Art
& Woodcarving Association
John Raucci & Mike Bloomquist
Next Meeting: Aug 6, 2002
Location: Inman Senior Citizen Center, Amsterdam, NY
Program: Blocking out Carousel
Animals - Walt Ruess, formerly of Carousel Magic of Mansfield, Ohio
Letter from the President
Well Gang, Dick Moran did it again,
and this time it wasn’t long after he’d already done it once. The Jeff
Phares class was spectacular! Saturday morning fourteen of us showed
up at the Inman Center with our Workmates and C clamps in hand and three
days later we all had an Indian or Mountain Man bust carving to be proud
of. I would like to again thank Dick Moran publicly for all his hard
work, making it all come together. Also, thanks to his wife, Nancy, for having
us over for the pot luck dinner Sunday night.
A couple of other club events
we have going, are the Altamont Fair and the Fonda Fair. Anyone wishing
to take part in either one of these events may do so by contacting Walt LeClair
(Altamont) or Ron Myers (Fonda). Their Phone numbers are in the last
There’s another event coming
up you don’t want to miss, and that’s the club picnic. There will be
great food, great games, great conversation, and, if Armand gifts us with
them, great stories. Don’t worry! If your not into “those stories”
you can join others carving in the other corner of the pavilion where “the
lighting’s better”. Details are elsewhere in this newsletter. Don’t
miss ‘em, and hope to see you there.
Aug- 8th thru the 18th Hamburg NY 16th annual
international woodcarving competition/expo at the Erie County Fair Grounds
Contact Lloyd Chrissman @ (716) 675-0987 for details.
Aug-17th Morrisville VT. Green
Mountain Woodcarvers 29th annual exibit/sale at the
Peoples Academy. I know Carl and Kay Borst are going so contact them
Aug. 31st -Sept.1st
The Caricature Carvers of America Carvealong
is at the Erie County Fairgrounds… Contact Ken Kohl @ (716) 937-3228 or
email to Kkohl49459@aol.com
The Second Annual NWA Woodworking Symposium
will include lectures and demonstrations of all manner of woodworking and
related topics and the two days will include an Instant Gallery, Coffee and
donuts all day , and a catered lunch.
It will take place at Sears in Colonie Center
on October 5 and 6. This is a Saturday and Sunday. Setup for the Instant
Gallery will be Friday October 4 all day until 7:00
Topics will include
- Five different Demonstrations
Most topics will be scheduled in more than one time
slot during the weekend.
- Five different Demonstrations
- Five different Demonstrations
Registration is limited to 275. Register by
calling Ken Evans at 518-753-7759 or email email@example.com
Cost of the event is $20 for the weekend if
you place one or two items in the Instant Gallery or $25 with no Item for
Fletcher Farm School for the Arts &
Crafts, in Ludlow Vermont is holding several woodcarving classes
this summer. Just to name a few… “Carving A Caricature Bust” with
Pete LeClair, “Scandinavian Style Figure Carving” with
Harley Refsal, and “Chip
Carving” with Wayne Barton. For more information
on these and other classes, call the school at 802-228-8770 or check out
their website at www.fletcherfarm.com
Two MVAWA Members Attend
Helen Gibson Class
A few meetings back we saw two beautiful
carvings of Moses carrying the Ten Commandments on our center table.
When Dick Moran did his usual fine job on the Show-N-Tell section of our
meeting, we found out these artworks belonged to Walt LeClair and Ernie D’Allesandro.
Seems these two were visiting points South this winter and hooked up with
a woodcarving class taught by Helen Gibson. Helen, a member of the
Brasstown Carvers (Brasstown, NC) and a instructor on the staff of the John
C. Campbell Folk School, is also the author of several books on woodcarving.
In addition to “Carving Moses”, the source for this class, she has written
“Carving the Nativity”, “Carving the Animals of the Nativity”, and “Carving
St Francis of Assisi”. After talking to Walt, I would say Helen’s classes
come highly recommended since both our members produced A+ carvings, and
had a good time doing it. Hey Guys, sure hoped you mentioned our club
while you were there, ‘cause you sure did us proud. Great work.
Keep on Carvin’
By Dick Moran
Meeting on Aug. 6 is Blocking–out
Carousel Animals - Walt Ruess, formerly of Carousel Magic of Mansfield, Ohio.
Also, members are asked to bring a recently completed carving to share with
everyone during the "Show and Tell" portion of the program.
The programs scheduled for the next few
months are as follows:
Sept. 3 – PocketKnife Bird Carving
– Allen Aardsma, Resident Carver at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain
Oct. 1 - Everyone Carves Something"
night. Everyone is asked to bring some woodcarving tools and whatever carving
project he/she is currently working on. Also, members are asked to bring
a recently completed carving to share with everyone during the "Show and
Tell" portion of this informal program.
Nov. 6 – Carving the Human Figure
- Carl Borst
Highlights of June Meeting…
By Dick Moran
Cheryl Dow Workshop
May 5, 6 & 7, 2003 -
8:30 AM-4:30 PM
The Mohawk Valley
Art & Woodcarving Association will be sponsoring a Cheryl Dow Workshop
on Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday, May 5, 6 & 7, 2003. The Cost
for the workshop will be $150 for members and $175 for nonmembers and for
members signing up after the September 3rd, 2002 due-date for deposits.
A nonrefundable $50 deposit is due at the time of signing up through Sept.
3, 2002; a $75 deposit will be required for signups after that date.
The balance of payments will be due by April 3, 2003 with a $1 per day late
fee. Checks should be made out to the Mohawk Valley Art & Woodcarving
Association or MVAWA.
The fee includes 4 Italian Poplar boards and all patterns used in the class.
Class size will not exceed 12 students. As far as projects go, it depends
on the level of the students... Cheryl teaches all levels; she usually does
two or three projects per person. The first day, most work on a barn
(with a tree and pump) scene to familiarize people with the skew and shader
and how best to use them. Barns are very forgiving and everyone comes
out with a good picture while learning. The second and third day, students
usually do a fur type animal and a bird. She teaches shading, undercutting,
and many other techniques using these pictures. She is mainly a carver's
wood burner. She also asks that carver's bring in any objects (flat-relief
or in-the-round) if they would like Cheryl to spend a bit of time on a help
session with them.
You can check out Cheryl Dow's website at www.cheryldow.com or her regularly
published articles on wood burning in ChipChats for more information on her
work and the types of projects done by her students in similar workshops.
*Deposits and payments will
only be refunded in the event that the workshop has to be canceled because
of inadequate numbers, cancellation by the presenter, etc. However the original
person to make payments to the MVAWA can turn over his/her deposits or payments-in-full
to another interested party.
with Dick Moran in trying to line up a few classes with some of the professional
carvers. These classes are very helpful in learning new techniques
and tricks of the trade. We do need a little input from the members
as to whether there is enough interest for us to pursue this.
As of now, I'm working
on such carvers as
Daisey-(realistic & caricature animals),
Bishop-(caricature people & animals),
Sabol-(santas, caricature animals & people),
Ortel-(caricatures & other),
Hajny-(realistic & caricature animals).
Most of these are hard to get as they fill up their time slots far in advance.
Some are not available till 2003 or 2004. Please give us an idea of
which of these you would be interested in and, also, how many classes do
you feel we should hold. How does 2 in the fall and 2 in the Spring
sound? These classes usually run about
$125-$150, and are for
Friday evening 5pm-9pm; Saturday & Sunday 9am-5pm. They can be
held during the week, but weekends allow the working people to take the classes.
There is much to be learned from any of these as they each have their own
style of carving. It takes time and persuasion to get these people,
and we are lucky to be able to get them to come to our area.
Please let us know your opinions.
You can contact either myself:
Dolores -- firstname.lastname@example.org
Or you can see one of us
at one of the meetings.
or Dick -- email@example.com
or Mike -- firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dolores V. Kramkowski
at Amsterdam Hospital
Senior Day Care
July 25th This is the forth year that we, Pieter Paulding, John Raucci,
Jim Harvey and Joe Rusik have done a soap carving workshop with the
patients at the day care center in Amsterdam. All 22 patients were
instructed and assisted in carving “little people” out of a bar of Ivory
Soap. A good time was had by the entire group… including some of the
THURSDAY CARVING - July 02
Bert Czwakiel, one of our new members tells me that Curtis Lumber on
Route 67 in Ballston Spa will give us a 10 percent discount on basswood,
butternut, etc. for any member of our club. See Dave Whitehouse at
Curtis Lumber to receive the discount.
displaying an interesting group of Swedish Horses, six in a variety of colors
and sizes, brightly painted in blue, green, brown and natural stain.
Jim is becoming a "Swede" guy.
doing a gnome of Harley Refusal's. Harvey is influencing everyone.
Eric is one of our newer carvers... and coming along great!
Colinas, our "social butterfly," doing a large butterfly wall plaque.
Conde brought her Lighthouse relief carving which she carved in Bob Stadtlander's
class. "It's the first thing I ever finished!" Well, it's nicely
done, and I hope it's the first of many-a-lovely carving.
doing a wood spirit cane, with the bark on & five faces. Different
type of carving by a very "spirited carver".
Nice to see
Walt LeClair back
carving. He has an order for an Emperor Penguin and is working hard
at it. Must remember to put the "waddle" in this penguin along with
a majestic bearing.
is doing a golfer and its going to look like one... sooner or later.
Just kidding, Bill! It's coming along just fine!
back to work on his beautifully intricate spoons. The definition is
tramp is looking good and just about done; it is a relief about 20 inches
by 30 inches with a great smiling face. Can't wait to see it painted!
Pileated Woodpecker, nicely done with a fine base & dead limb.
Display means a lot, and this is a good one!
Porte showed his first carving, a large elephant. This is a fine
carving, and we were all astonished at the quality of a first piece.
I can imagine what the next one will be like. Great work, Phil!
made Nelson Downs a carving bib. It's 6 inches by 9 inches
long with a decorative strap. It's kinda cute even though it looks
like the ones kids drool on! Actually, it's a protector when you carver
toward your chest. How about that?
Tell me and
and I remember.
me and I understand.
The Jeff Phares
class was awesome, killer, spectacular, and all sorts of superlatives that
I can’t think of quickly enough. Harold and I camped at North Hampton
State Park and commuted into Amsterdam as planned. It worked out great,
and we even got a little carvin’ in Friday night as warm-up for the class.
Saturday morning fourteen of us showed up at the Innman Center with our Workmates
and C clamps in hand. Jeff had several variations of Native Americans
and mountain men in pictures and left what combination we wanted to do pretty
much up to each individual. I finally settled on a Native American
straight from his book with only minor variations. Harold, I thought,
was doing one too, but at the last minute saw a Santa in the gallery of Jeff’s
book, and went for that. Hmmm... we’ll keep you posted on it’s progress
as I describe the weekend.
Saturday was whacking off the corners, with a little face shaping at the
end and the beginnings of the nose. You gotta know there was some very
impressive piles of chips by the end of the day. That evening several
of us went with Jeff to this restaurant Carl suggested in Rotterdam.
It wouldn’t matter if I remembered the name, I couldn’t find it again if
it meant a free tool roll full of new “Swiss Made” chisels. Thank God
we were able to hitch a ride with John Raucci. The dinner was great,
with the conversation covering Jeff’s home state New Mexico, horses, motorcycles,
and Jeff’s converted greenhouse carving shop. We got mistaken for a
biker gang by this couple one table over who didn’t seem to mind the good
time we were having (and loud laughing). Don’t know why bikers...
they might have got that impression from John I guess. After the restaurant
we went to Carl’s carving shop, home of the infamous Tuesday Group.
Very impressive, and strangely cleaner than I expected. Although no
one would sit in it, we also saw the revered carving seat of one Ron Meyers.
Carl even sent me away with a souvenir log of “butternut”... what a guy.
Now I ‘m not one to look a gift log in the knot, and I’m shamefully poor
at identifying wood species, but when I got this log home, split it, removed
the bark, and began planing it.... it look an awful lot like red oak.
was more wood chips, and the faces were all slowly taking shape thanks to
patient, small steps doled out by Jeff. Sometimes it took a while for
him to make a circuit of the class, but he always made it to each one, and
there was always plenty of non-crucial wood (nothing near the face)
to remove in between visits. Most times I would take a valiant stab
at the step he had just illustrated, but he would appear and, with great
sweeping cuts, show me how it should be done on one half of my piece.
Then he’d leave me to match the other half... well that is after I picked
my jaw off the floor I would try and match the other half. Sunday night
we were invited over to Dick and Nancy Moran’s home for a pot luck dinner.
They even let us out-of-towners who didn’t have a pot come. It was
another great evening and Jeff shared stories of how he got started
in carving, stories of the CCA (gee! we know a couple of characters who belong
to that group), how he came to write books for Fox/Chapel, and how his bronzes
are produced. We also got a tour of Dick’s shop and his collection
of cacti and succulent plants. Another great evening, and thanks to
hitching a ride with John once again, Harold and I got there and back to
Amsterdam in the same evening.
saw the faces really come together, and I saw several masterworks around
me at the end of the day. My piece? I was happy with it... it
was average for the group... and it was humanoid looking. Can’t tell
you how many gouge techniques I picked up watching Jeff work. Some
I had seen before, but neglected to practice lately. Most of them poor
Jeff had to show me more than once before it sunk in how he was making that
chisel fly like that. Yeah... flying. In another life, when I
used to bale hay on the neighbor’s dairy farm, I really enjoyed watching
barn swallows fly across the field above me. Diving, climbing, banking,
cutting as they intercepted insects kicked up by the machinery. Yeah,
flying... that’s what Jeff’s gouges were doing... like a swallow. He’d
start at one side of the face and then swoop, cut, bank, twist and up!...
and it was done. What took me five or ten hesitant cuts, took him one
bold stroke. Harold’s Santa? Harold threw us another curve in
the eleventh hour and turned it into a mountain man... with a hood... with
a tassel. So it’s a great mountain man, and like most mountain men
he has an Indian name... “he-who-flies-with-reindeer”.
Well, I hope those of you who weren’t at the seminar got a little picture
of it. So, keep them edges keen, the chips piled high, and see ya at
it, as usual,
If you would like to sell something you can advertise it here first
and, if you want, you can bring it to our monthly meeting to display it.
Just let the members know when and where they can see what you are selling.
Let me know when you place your ads and I will get the word out if they
can see it at an upcoming meeting. Remember all advertising here is
We have already had success with this endeavor!
********* For Sale *********
- Cut to Order - Also some Cherry and Butternut….Prices on request
Will furnish Bird Blanks from your plans or mine…..Prices on request
depending on species.
For any information on the above items please contact Walt LeClair @
Club Crew Neck
Sweatshirt - size Medium - Never worn - wrong size ordered -
If interested please call Fred Jenzer @ 518-384-7313 or e-mail
Collector - Model # NN720 - Paid $260.00 for it will take $130 -
Runs on 110 or 220 volts. Call Tony Monte @ 518-357-4602
Saw - 18" Variable Speed - Approximately 4 years old with very little
use. Original cost $450, willing to sell for $300. Call Bill Johnson
@518-399-5927 or e-mail @ email@example.com
Saw Mill - used to convert logs to lumber- 36" w/accessories - very
Timber Bear Chain Saw w/ripping chain and w/extra chains - very good
Please call Steve Madej @ 518-842-7219 if you are interested in these
Lathe - with live center, face plate and set of turning tools. $150
Tabletop Shaper - with numerous cutters. $85 Call Ev Botsford at 518-438-4788
- For sale - Please contact Gordon Litke @ 584-1128
********* Wanted *********
Old draw knife
with folding handles, call Marcus Kruger @ 518-829-7008 or e-mail
Old, Used Chain
Saw Chains - In any condition. Call Bud Murtlow @ 518-885-9579
To place want ads for any wood carving related items please contact
Carol Ayers @ 518-587-6841,
3 Poe Court, Ballston Spa, NY 12020 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
……it's free! Don't forget that you can also place an Ad for something
By Carol Ayers
HATS, APRONS AND PATCHES…
All of the items are embroidered with our club logo and the prices
including sales tax is as follows:
- Polo shirt,
light ash gray (short sleeve with collar and tab front) is
- Long sleeve
T-shirt, light ash gray is $12.50
- Crew neck
sweatshirt, light ash gray is $16.50
- Hooded, full
zipper front sweatshirt with side pockets, light ash gray is
- Apron, natural
with no pocket is $8.50
- Hat, tan is
- Club embroidered
patch is $3.50
Club static cling decals are $2.00
(sales tax is included
in all the pricing)
Ordering these items
is as follows:
Ordering these items is as follows.
- Patches, hats and
decals are on hand and can be bought from me at any time.
- Shuts, sweatshirts
and aprons need a total of six orders, any combination, for me to
place an order with the company.
I have ordered a dozen hats and they are in. From now
on, I will try always to have club hats on hand, just like the patches
and static cling decals for the car window. A hat, club shirt, logo
apron or sweatshirt is always a good thing to have when doing fain
or shows. I am starting a new list for shirts, since I have just placed
an order for six items. As soon as I have another six items to embroider,
I can order again.
you are interested you can place an order by e-mailing me, Carol
or writing me at
3 Poe Court
Ballston Spa, NY 12020
or phoning me at
members and other clubs have asked who does our shirts, hats, and
now decals. The company is Cameo Productions, Amsterdam,
NY . They have quality merchandise, give you personal
attention, and are capable of producing almost any quantity. They
have also are willing to meet deadlines and fill our small orders.
If you would like a catalog please call Joe at 18008094839 or 5188424839.
If he is not there, Lisa will help you.
Letters to the Editor
Send correspondence to...
117 Riverview Parkway
Rome, N.Y. 13440
Or Email to;
Back to the top