Media: WoodTo Dan researching, photographing and observing real birds is almost as much fun as carving and painting life scale birds from a variety of woods. Much of the observation and research activity occurs on their 21 acre farm in Alleghany County, NC.
My initial attraction to birds began while hunting with my father at age 5. Observing the daily feeding habits, the flocking and migration patterns and the opportunity to study the anatomy of birds in considerable detail facinated me. Now when I raise my gun stock to my shoulder and pull the trigger the telephoto lens on the mounted camera records intrisic body, wing and feather details of song, raptor and upland game birds. The lush woods and pasture lands in the mountains of North Carolina offer a feast of different birds to observe and study. Such activity provides opportunity to carve birds in life like detail and in poses recorded by camera. John C. Campbell Folk School offered the initial training of heritage carving with knives and gouges. Today high speed power tools and heat regulated burning pens are used to create realistic shaping and feathering details. As an instructor at J.C. Campbell my passion for carving birds is now passed on to their other students. I carved a bird for the 2002 White House Christmas tree and have carved a Bald Eagle with a 6'10" wing span. Memberships are held in the Guild, Piedmont Craftsmen and the New River Crafts group of Alleghany County, NC.