Saturday, November 28, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving (just a little late)

I was trying to think of something to post for Thanksgiving. I've never carved a pilgrim or a turkey, so how about a couple of Native American portraits. This first one is a project from a class I took with Jan Schoonover a few years ago. I have never had much success carving faces (so I don't even try very often) but this one really surprised me. It just goes to show what you can do with a good teacher leading you and Jan is one of my favorites.

This second picture is one I did from a Robb Barr video called Chief Plenty Horse. I was even more happy with the way this turned out and it did well in one of the spring leather shows a couple years ago.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Carolina Wren Class in Fargo, ND

I've been asked if I would teach a class at the fairly new Tandy Leather Factory store in Fargo, ND. We decided to do the same wren class that I taught earlier this year in Rapid City. The class covers carving, embossing and coloring the wren. The class is currently scheduled to be held on December 11th and 12th. If anyone would like to attend this class, they need to get a hold of Mark Norquist, the manager, before December 5th. You can contact Mark at:
Tandy Leather Factory #170
1617 32nd Ave. S, Suite O
Fargo, ND 58103
Phone: 701-235-4005
Toll Free: 877-322-8636
Fax: 701-235-2775

Here are a couple different versions of the wren picture.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Tina Croff,

Following up on the comment by Stacy that I have a lot of very talented and generous friends, here's a holster that was given to me by Tina Croff. Tina definitely is a talented leather artist. She comes up with some of the neatest designs, and her coloring is some of the best I have ever seen. To top it off, she's only been carving leather for a couple years!!! I absolutely love how she did the roses on this holster, the depth of the carving, the little irregularities in the petals, the shades of color and the contrast with the black background. I'm really proud to have this piece in my collection of leather art.

Tina has also been very generous in sharing some of the patterns that she has come up with. A couple of them were used on when I was doing the monthly carving challenges. Actually, the idea for the monthly challenges came to me when I saw her "PMS Lioness" carving. The zebra was another pattern she shared with us all on LW and was also used as a monthly challenge. I combined these patterns and used them on a photo album that I use to display much of my leather work. (the Sheridan portion of the pattern was drawn and shared by Clay Miller). I made several photo albums using the zebra pattern and the one shown here took a first place and best of category at an IFOLG show.

A while ago, I was planning on making a purse for Stacy and I was having trouble coming up with a pattern. Stacy had seen a design on something Tina had done that she really liked. I asked Tina if it would be possible for her to draw me up a pattern for the purse, and she agreed. The pattern was a little challenging for me to carve, but it worked perfectly on the purse.

Tina is just a really great artist, and an even better friend. She just recently moved back from Michigan to her home, Sweden and it seems that her website is down but you can see a lot more of her work on her deviant art site . Thanks Tina for all your help, inspiration, and of course, the holster!!


My wife started doing "zentangles" a couple years ago. It's a kind of artistic doodling and they have a website that shows and tells all about it, One day I decided to try a zentangle on leather and it was kind of fun. My friend Kate asked me about these yesterday so I decided to share a picture of the one I did along with the website. It's always fun to try new things with leather.

Deer Season Update

Just thought I'd throw in an update to the deer season post. My kids have been hiking along with all our deer hunters since they were 4 or 5 years old, maybe even earlier for Jessi. She got her first license 3 years ago and has taken a nice buck each year since. Here's this years buck, taken yesterday morning before school. He happened to be walking in the pasture right behind the house and she didn't have any more time off from work to hunt, so she took the opportunity.

(and yes, those are her pajamas)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

We temporarilly interupt leather carving for deer season

My leather carving time has been temporarily interrupted by deer season. Deer season runs for 3 weekends in November and usually we get at least a few visitors each weekend. The first weekend of deer season brought Dave Peterson back to the badlands and while he was here he dropped off my entries from the recent IFOLG show. Dave had picked them up from Kathy Flanagan when he went down to Denver to take a class from Bill Gomer. Bill had to cancel his class due to the big snow storm CO got, but he did meet Kathy while she was on a "yak exchange trip". I had given my entries to the show to Kathy when I was at her class in Rapid City and she had asked if I had any items she could use for the Columbine Guild display table at the show. One thing she asked to take and put on the table was the embossed bugling elk picture I showed her awhile ago. I told her she could take it, but when I got it back, I wanted it to be colored. I was just joking (well, sort of I was) but when I got it back, it was colored. Not "just" colored, but very beautifully colored! Kathy did a really great job. Thanks so much for doing that Kathy. When Stacy saw this, she commented that I have some very talented and very generous friends, and that is so true.

I mentioned to Kathy that maybe we could try teach a class together on this project, I could teach the carving and she could teach the coloring and she agreed that that would be fun, so look out Rapid City, we're coming back one of these days!

The second weekend of deer season we have a group of hunters that come out each year and camp in our yard. Our whole family has come to look forward to this weekend each year. We figured out that we have been doing this since 1993. Our kids grew up hiking the badlands each fall looking for mule deer with "the hunters". This year we had wonderful weather and got to spend a lot of time hiking the rough stuff. In the evenings we eat in the tent and sit around and catch up, tell stories and learn all kinds of "useful" lessons. Deer camp is over now for this year, but there is still one more weekend of deer season. Then maybe I'll have more time to get back to carving leather again. I've recently been given some great patterns to try out so all I need now is some time.