ST. CHARLES AREA WOODCARVERS NEWSLETTER
   

April 2002

Silver Dollar City Welcomes Carvers

Silver Dollar City and the Ozark Mountain Woodcarvers of Missouri held their 6th annual Seminar last month. Our club was well represented this year, although it was down a little from previous years. Red and Charlotte Cross, Don Wilson, Barb Smith, Sheldon White, Dave Lincoln and myself spent a great week in the Ozark fashion of Silver Dollar City. The park wasn't open to the public at the time, so the experience was even better without the maddening throngs. The weather was a little tedious (Cold) to start with, but it warmed up and we were able to eat outside at the picnic tables most of the week. 

Our group took classes with John Engler, Linda Sales, Debbie Edwards, Gerald Copeland, and Harold Enlow. My wife, Lana, the only non-carving spouse there this year, took her favorites, basket weaving and floral design. The opportunities are unlimited for both carvers and spouses. If you can't find something that interests you, then you are definitely too picky. 

If you can possibly handle a week of carving and camaraderie, either SDC or Doane are well worth your money and effort. Actually, Doane is the less expensive if you can only get away for one. The cost is slightly less and it includes rooms and all food. But, the total experience and quality of instructors for both is totally without equal. 

Barb Smith took a wood burning class with Linda Sales. She produced the amazing piece with animals and an Indian Maiden in Show and Tell.

Dave Lincoln and I took Gerald Copeland and his realistic Farmer sitting on a milk can. Dave almost finished his.

Charlotte Cross and Don Wilson took John Engler. Charlotte's finished deer is shown in Show and Tell. John Engler is scheduled to be here in August.

Red Cross took Harold Enlow and started at least 5 projects. He likes to have something to work on after he gets home. 

March-April Display Case - Charlotte and Stanley Cross

Affiliations: St. Charles Area Woodcarvers, Mid America Woodcarvers, Holzschnitzers Carving Club of Belleville, and The National Woodcarvers Association. 

Background: Red retired from General Motors in 1986 and started carving a few months after that. Charlotte has been carving for about 7 years. They carve mostly in the round, but enjoy relief and chip carving, too. Red took up woodburning to go along with the carving, and taught woodburning at the Cultural Arts Center for two years. A woodburning seminar presented by Cheryl Dow was a great help. Charlotte also wood burns and could teach you a thing or two.
Training: They have taken classes from Cletis Sparks, Walter Schmierbach, Dave Lincoln, John Engler, Don Wilson, Wilbert Brewton, Debbie Edwards, Len Dillon and Gerald Sears. They are regular visitors to the Doane College and Silver Dollar City seminars and are ready for any classes sponsored by the club.

Thoughts: Carving is a great pastime and a hobby where you meet a lot of great people.

Show and Tell

Barb Smith completed this burning of an Indian Maiden in Linda Sales class at Silver Dollar City. My picture doesn't show all the ghost animals, but if you look close you can see a few. Charlotte Cross completed the running deer in John Engler's class.  Also at Silver Dollar City.

Jack Combs completed the red and gray faced owls. The leaves are made out of grocery bags. Have you no shame, Jack?

Chris Klinckhardt did a Rex Branson rough out of an Indian bust in class with Dave Lincoln.

 

Jerry Burson had a pretty framed glass etching.   The glass fooled the focus on my camera and it didn't show very clear.  Sorry, Jerry.  Now don't you go inviting pretty girls up to see your etchings.

Russ Sears continued on his tool quest with this drill press attachment. It's used to drill holes at crazy angles. Looks pretty handy, but most of my holes are drilled at crazy angles without the help of any special tools.

 

The Rest of the News

Showcase Schedule: Due to a scheduling mix up, Red and Charlotte graciously agreed to extend their stay in the display case for another month. Thanks guys. 

Keeping the display case filled with our members work is a job that has to be done if we want to present the best image of the club to the Art Center's visitors. Getting volunteers to show their work is fairly easy and I appreciate everyone's cooperation in that regard. We are in good shape for this year. The schedule is as follows:

April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
Red and Charlotte Cross
Ray Clark
Don and Dee Kley
Don Wilson
Bill Maguire
Russ Sears
Wonders of Wood winners
Charles Adams
Your Name Here

If any of you above have a problem with this schedule or would prefer not to show your works for any reason, please let me know ASAP.   I can arrange for a replacement.  As you can see, we have room available in December and 2003 is wide open. All members are encouraged to display.  The job of scheduling and arranging for the display case is not hard, but it takes dedication. It sort of fell on me a few years ago and I have enjoyed it. However, I would like to encourage someone to volunteer to take over.

Step up to the plate:  We also need volunteers for other club functions. The most critical is chairman of the Wonders of Wood Show.  Dee Kley will be a hard act to follow, but surely we have a member that can take the helm and do a wonderful job. Taking over now will be easier because it is fresh in our minds and Dee is available to help and advise and share her knowledge of the do's and don'ts. That is, if the new chairperson would like her to do so.

If you don't want to be the head person, there are other jobs waiting for help: Judging, advertising, budgeting, etc. Your club can use your expertise, whatever it may be. But the key word is YOUR CLUB. Make it or break it. Volunteer for the job of your choice.

Member Spotlight - Jim Leifeld: Jim just came back from Westlake, Ohio competing in the Ohio Decoy Collectors and Carvers Association Show. He showed two mallards, a red head and a ruddy duck. The mallard drake won a first and the hen won a second. The red head took second best of show. The Ruddy duck cleaned up with a first and first best of show. Great job Jim. 

Gerald Sears Santa Seminar is scheduled for July 19-21. Rough outs (which are larger than his usual size) will cost $45 or $50 each. The cost for the seminar is $125 and a $50 deposit will be required. A minimum of 10 people is required, with a maximum of 12. We have 10 signed up, but a couple would like to cancel if anyone else would like to take their place. Call Charles Adams to get on the list. It's a seminar worth taking. 

Our Spring Carve Out is June 22nd at the Ft. Zumwalt pavilion. Since we no longer have regular carving on Saturday, this will be one of our few opportunities to participate in this fun activity. We do not have a project leader so far. If anyone would like to bring something for the group to carve, let me know and I'll pass the information along. Don't forget to mark this day on your calendar. I'll have more information as the date gets closer.

From the Wagon master: It's almost time to start getting camping gear ready. The Holzschnitzers campout is June 7-8-9. I will have a project for the campout. I will need to know if you want to do the project, because I am going to get rough outs made. The project is a winemaker and his dog. I have it in a setting but I will be supplying the winemaker and dog only. Price of the rough out will be $30.

Don't forget we are going to try a new campground in June, Pin Oak Creek. You will have to take I-44 West to Highway 100. Turn right on 100 and Left on AT to Pin Oak Creek. I will be mailing the camping list to the campground manager by May 17th so they can keep us all together. I will also need to know if you want full hookup or just water and electric.

If you don't want to camp, you can just spend the day and carve with us doing the project, or your own thing.

We will also have our pot luck supper Saturday night. We will have a nice dining room to eat in this time so the weather won't affect us.

I guess that is all for now, so get those tools sharpened up and I hope to see you in June. Any questions? Give me a call at 314-843-6244.

Bob Biermann

Be a Newsletter Reporter: You too can be a reporter for the newsletter. Something on your mind? Don't clutter up your limited space. Get it off your mind by sending it to the editor. See room for improvement? Bring it to the club's attention through the newsletter. All input will be gratefully accepted.  I know it is hard for you to realize, but there are some clubs that don't put out a newsletter if their members don't submit something to put in it.  If you don't contribute, you will have to continue putting up with my ramblings.

Simple Support: Many carvers use elaborate vices, clamps or work holders for carving in the round. For supporting small three dimensional hand-sized pieces, something that works well is a small bag filled with sand, kitty litter, or other small hard grains, even dried beans. The work is held down on the bag, so that the section being carved is supported. The bag moulds itself to irregular shapes as you carve.

My bag is about 6 inches square and made of soft leather. I used bird shot for extra weight. I have never had to patch a hole, knock on wood. Heavy canvas or denim works well also. Several carvers in the morning group use kitty litter and their bags are 6 by 8 inches, or larger. 

By today's standards, lead bird shot wouldn't be appropriate, but I made my bag before we got so smart. Give it a try.

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