TJ's Most Frequently Asked Questions
and Their Answers.
Q: How long do they take?
A: I do not know. I do not time them. It all starts with collecting pieces and allowing them to properly age and/or dry. Some pieces take up to 2-3 years before they are ready to carve. Large pieces of Crepe Myrtle and Christmas trees are good examples of this process. I draw a lot. The more you draw the more you know what shapes will best fit most pieces. I have been carving for over seven years. It has taken a lot of time and practice for me to reach this level.
Q: Is it done by hand or do you use power tools?
A: They are hand carved with high speed rotary tools. Like a dentist drill only larger. I do not use any computers, lasers, or CNC machines in the creation of my work. I have worked with chisels. While they can be used to create wood carvings similar to what I make, rotary tools allow me to create softer shapes and smoother undercuts than chisels.
Q: It must be nice to have a hobby. (Ok. Not a question, but frequently directed at me.)
A: Art is my full time job. Carving, drawing, and painting.
Q: What types of wood are they?
A: Mostly softer types of wood. Pine, Maple, Poplar, and Beech. Various dense types of shrubbery, Bougainvillea, Peppertree, Elderberry, and other unidentifiable pieces.
Q: Is it all driftwood?
A: No. Most of it is wood or shrubs that I find on the forest floor, or pieces I rescue from the side of the road.
Q: What type of drugs do you take? You must drink a lot (of alcohol).
A: I am old school straightedge. I do not believe in altering your mind through substances. My work is the result of countless hours of exploring my imagination.
Q: Where do you get your ideas?
A: I study clouds, trees, shadows, shapes I see in textured ceilings, patterns in tiled floors. The more you work at stretching your imagination, the more you will find.
More questions and answers coming soon.
While you are here, please enjoy this interview from Massive Voodoo. While you are there, check out the miniature painting and other interviews from artists they support.