Expand your Chip Carving experience! Work on a "canvas" that you Sculpt!
BARTON STAR BURST
Based on Wayne Barton's classic
design (my personal favorite) and,
Ready-to-Carve with the pattern printed on a 12" beaded edge flat basswood plate
Don't delay. Register Today!
To register, call 1-800-365-5724
Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. EST
Is chip carving art or craft?
My answer is, both! Do you think about interesting new ways to use Chip Carving techniques and designs that you may have seen on other carvings? That happened to me about ten years ago ...although I didn't know it at the time.
I had been Chip Carving for 5-6 years when a friend and very talented John Campbell Folk School woodturning Instructor asked, "How do you want to be recognized as a Chip Carver". Of course, I said something naive like, "I'd like to be recognized for producing carvings that are as near-perfect as possible." Subtly shaking his head, he said, "Who's in charge of knowing what that is"? Knowing what what is, I asked. And so it went for a while (an Abbott and Costello routine in the making) before I realized that he had an important point to make. There is no 'standard' chip carving "style", just as there is no 'standard' painting style, or blacksmithing style. There are "standard" techniques applied within each of those disciplines, but how they are applied is what makes for the variety we all admire. Thinking about chip carving specifically, I'd guess that nearly all of us started out learning to make the gold-standard 3-sided chip. It wasn't as easy as it looked and some of us (that includes me) thought we'd never get it right ... even though we all witnessed our instructors make three perfectly angled cuts that met at a single point below the surface of the wood, resulting in a perfect little "triangle-based pyramid" (yes, that's a real term) that fell out of the board with no coaxing. It's a beautiful thing! Is it "Art"? Most of us probably thought so at that moment, but of course, that little piece of wood, or the "hole" it left in the board is not art - by itself!
In 1998, Wayne Barton published a Book titled, The Art of Chip Carving. Without a doubt, it's one of my three favorite books on Chip Carving. Why? Because it's all about 21 artists who, wielding a simple knife, create amazing works of art! Their style or type of woodcarving is Chip Carving. But what results from the way they apply their own techniques and skills is beautiful and completely unique. It's Art!
When you take the John Campbell Folk School Chip Carving Class, January 10-14, 2022, you'll be applying the techniques - the pieces that make-up chip carving as a craft. My goal is to see you leave there, proud of what you created - a the Work of Art!