Custom Wood Carving Portrait of a Pilot

Custom Wood Carving Portrait by Cindy Chinn

This project has been a long time in the making.  It began when I registered for a woodcarving workshop and signed up for a ‘log carving’ class.  I really wanted to learn some tips about carving in 3D and wondered what might make the best subject for the class, other than the standard Santa or Indian. I ended up deciding to make a custom wood carving portrait of my grand uncle, Alton.

I worked from an old photo that I loved, taken while he was a US Navy pilot in World War II.  I knew it would be a little challenging to create a 3D model from an old black and white photo, but then I do like to challenge myself!

With it being during my birthday, I bought myself a present and signed up for the week long course at the Mid-America Woodcarvers Association’s “Doane Experience” hosted in Crete Nebraska.  The Log Carving class was led by James Barr. Continue reading

New Metal Art – Motorcycle Saw

Custom metal art by Cindy ChinnI recently completed a custom order for a client who asked for “a guy on a bike being chased by dogs”.  We went back and forth with various ideas and she decided to pay a little more a custom 3D bike to be added to the saw.  This was a fun challenge, but turned out great!  I can’t wait to hear from client about how this special gift went over.  😀 Continue reading

Carved Pencil of a Giraffe Family

Pencil Carving of a Giraffe Family with PennyHere is the story of my latest carved pencil that was completed in October 2016.  After the success and online popularity of my Elephant Pencil, I was commissioned to complete a Giraffe Pencil with a similar layout.  I knew it would be tough – but WOW – I had quite a time working on this one!  😀

I ended up trying different graphite based on hardness, I went through a number of giraffes to get the final three and one baby giraffe escaped – never to be found again!

Click any image to view it larger.

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New Train Pencil Carvings!

Train Pencil CarvingEver since my first train pencil carving went “viral” across the internet back in December 2015, I’ve been very busy becoming an “internationally renowned pencil carving artist”!  😀  I’ve been featured in dozens of websites and many magazines.  I’ve done interviews with people around the world and my work has been shown on Japanese (and soon Spanish) TV.

I love the free publicity, but I’m still staying really busy trying to get all of my commission work out in a timely manner.  This month, I’ve completed four new train pencils and have them ready to ship!  Below are photos from the latest set of train carvings.  It’s hard to imagine but each engine is about 3/16″ tall (less than 5mm) and each engine is a different design. Continue reading

Log Carving Portrait

UncleAlton-04
In July 2016, I treated myself to a birthday present of a week long workshop in woodcarving.  This event was hosted by the Mid-America Woodcarvers.  They had quite a few options for workshops, but I decided on Basswood log carving so I could try a large 3D project.  James Barr taught the Mallet Carving class and through him I got to see just how fast a real log carver can work when he has the experience!

For my project I chose to do a portrait of a pilot.  I can’t say who it is just yet as it will be a gift next year.  Click any image below to view it larger. Continue reading

Train Pencil Carving in Progress

Three-Rivers-Line-No6-ANGLEDI’m putting on the finishing touches of a new series of ‘train pencils‘.  In the meantime, I thought that I would show you some of the in progress photos I’ve taken along the way.

As I’ve stated before, I don’t carve the trains and the tracks directly out of the pencil in one shot.  This would just be impossible and frustrating – as one chip after hours of carving can cause me to start over.  I carve the engines separately and then mount them on the rails (pencil leads) and carve the later trestles and cars from the pencil. Continue reading

Pet Portraits in Pencil Leads!

Goldie-Floppy-ear-dog-tnAs an artist I never know what kind of work will catch on – especially with the power of social media.  All it takes is the right page to share your work and you’re swamped!  I’ve been carving pencils all year and one of the sub-categories I’ve added recently is ‘Pet Portraits‘ in Pencil lead.

Carving a pencil lead is tough to begin with, but trying to match a certain breed of dog and then try to capture that particular dog’s own personality in a piece of graphite that is 3/16″ of an inch wide. Continue reading

Hand Carved Church Pews

Healing-Pew-01a-jesus-close-tnI know a lot people come here to see more my tiny carved pencils, but I thought it might fun to show some other carvings I have done on a larger scale.  I’m a visual artist and love to work in a wide range of media.  I also love to combine different media to create something truly unique.

The first church pew I carved was eight feet long and included a back-lit stained glass piece.  It took me over 700 hours during a long Nebraska winter.  (I still have it for sale, by the way)

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