Looking for a new way to sign my wood carvings, in early 2005 I became interested in the art of Pyrography.  I had dabbled with small projects in past years, but had never looked at it seriously.  It is an ancient art form that has gained and lost recognition over the centuries. Now in the 21st century it is regaining recognition as a true art form and pyrographic artists are excelling with  old as well as new and exciting ideas and techniques in creativity. 

For me, this art form touches on several areas of interest; Natural mediums are what I like to work with so the use of wood, tagua nut, gourds, and leather are appealing.  I am attracted to the permanency of burned art, and like the way I can manipulate texture and depth with heat.  Engraving with heat is really another form of relief carving creating a dramatic affect that adds character and intensity. I find drawing/painting and engraving with heat a wholly satisfying art form. 

Having just begun, I have a long way to go.   I hope you will join me as I travel through the experiences of growing with this wonderful art of Pyrography.


 

 "Thoughts of Yesterday"

Both the burning and the frame are 'Hard Board'.
It is my first attempt at burning this medium,
and while it is different than Baltic Birch it's nice to work with.

This sweet little girl won 1st Place in the 'Professional Division'

at a Wood Workers Show in 2011

 

1st Place, Best of Advanced division, Best of show in 2008 


 

Morning Walk
Sisters  
  Little Waif
1st place in the Advanced division at the April 2007 Wood Workers Show. Measuring at 12.25" by 8.5" this burning is stained with oil pastels.
 



African Grey won 1st place in the Intermediate division of the 2006 Wood Workers Show. Burned on Baltic Birch measuring at 11" by 7.25" this burning is colored with a light organic stain and oils. The corners are adorned with scroll saw cutouts.


 
This Cockatoo burning won 1st place in the Advanced Animal division at the wood workers show 2008.  


 

When I first started carving in the early 80's, I didn't have a camera, or computer, and sold most everything I carved. In fact, I saved a meager 5 small pieces from when I carved Rock, and purchased one back from a buyer who kept a few of my rock carvings in his personal collection. Having sold so many carvings over the years out of rocks ranging from Beach Jade to Fire Opal, and then more carvings than I can remember out of Fossil Ivory and Wood, I languish over the lack of record in pictures. I am grateful for the few carvings I have though. As with most artists, it is interesting to see the evolution of ones work. I remember the stages of my life as my work has evolved and how life' events have affected my style and the subjects I have created.

I hope you enjoy sharing the journey with me through this time line Art Gallery.




I call these little dolls '1800s Ivory Pegs', as they are my own rendition of the woodens from the 1800s.
Lillianna measures at 3.25" with a character and style of a lady in her 20s or 30s.  Krisabella is just a little girl of about 6 or 7 measuring at 2.75" tall.  Both are hand carved from Hippo Ivory. Jointed at the neck, shoulders, elbows, waist, hips and knees, their eyes are inlaid tiny moss green glass beads, and they can be worn by a cord strung through a hole hidden in the back of their hair.



 





 

Jeremiah stands 5.25" tall. He is one of the earliest and is the largest multi jointed Fossil Ivory artist doll I have carved to date. Hand carved from Fossil Walrus Tusk this piece of Ivory is mostly denting, and where the ivory ‘skin’ is visible a lot of it is a rich mocha color. While the colorations are not ideal for skin tone, they often add character and charm. I am personally fond of the color variations in Jeremiahs body parts, especially his feet where it looks like he may have been playing outside bare foot. Jeremiah’s ivory was sanded, and polished to a light luster. His eyes are inlaid cobalt blue glass beads.





Blue is the first jointed Frog I carved. I’m drawn to frogs in general and in art form, so I just carved him for fun. Jointed at the shoulders, elbows, hips, and knees, Blue is easily posed in fun frog positions. I did business with a small village in Alaska where I bought some beautifully colored Ivory and ‘Blue’ is carved from one of those pieces. Fossil Ivory absorbs the minerals of the earth in which it lays buried over hundreds of years. The most common color the minerals produce is burnt umber, or rust, that largely comes from copper. Other mineral deposits produce mochas, and taupe’s, and rarer are cobalt deposits which produce a blue tone. I have even seen some burgundy in Ivory. The piece Blue is carved from has a lot of cobalt deposits in it mixed with a myriad of mochas, taupe’ and burnt umber. It is a beautiful piece of Ivory, and Blue wears his colors with pride. He has a lot of character, and is fun to have around.









When I started researching antique dolls, I happened across an article about ceremonial jointed Ivory dolls from Asia. I of course was fascinated and looked to find further information on them to no avail. With the few black and white photocopies I had to work from I created my own version of them, and Ty is an example of that work. Standing at 2.25" tall, he is jointed at the shoulders, elbows, hips, and knees with tiny inlaid black glass bead eyes. This piece of Fossil Walrus Tusk is rich with copper deposits giving it a burnt umber color. Wearing a leather jacket, Ty' ceremonial mask fits over his face, and can be worn with the string attached that runs through his fisted hands.







Mandy is a sweet little bear carved from Walrus tusk. She stands 2.25 inches tall, with inlayed glass bead eyes.



 

I shared my home with a very special California Desert Tortoise for a time, and carved this piece in her likeness. The dark greens, mochas and creams in this unusual piece are vivid deep and waxy.  It is a unique and beautiful chunk of Fossil Walrus Ivory.  Even though I know she's happy with her boyfriend and babies in California, I miss that sweet tortoise and am happy to have this piece in her memory.
In my early days of carving Ivory, hand carved Fossil Walrus tooth beads were popular, and a less expensive way to share my carving talents with the buying public. I carved all manner of beads in animal forms, Pagan, Christian and other religious symbolisms, Egyptian, Mayan, Native American, and human forms. Wizards were one of the most popular, and the meditating wizard the most popular of the wizard group. This bead is an example of one of those.
I was able to purchase this piece back from a buyer who kept several of my carvings in his personal collection, and was generous enough to part with this one. Carved from Catlanite ‘Indian Pipestone’ this young Bison stands 3.25" tall, is 5 .5" long, and 1.5" wide. Most of the animals I carved were adolescent in character. This young Bison is an example of that.
My husband mined rocks and crystals for several years, and sold them at the beginnings of the "New Age" movement.  As a birthday gift I carved this 3.25" long, 2.25" wide and 1.25" deep 'Rock Man' bowl out of Catlinite, also known as Indian Pipestone.  The little man is just hugging his rock much like my husband frequently did, physically, mentally and emotionally. We both enjoy this little bowl.  It brings back memories of a less encumbered time.
Hand carved years ago, these two little dolls, standing no more than 6.25 inches tall, have been the prototypes for a resin series I started in 2000. They have since been replicated in resin several hundred times. The one sitting in front is as close as I have been able to come to replicating the Original Hitty; a little American antique wooden doll about whom a Newbery Award winning book was written. Over the last 11 or more years, I have hand carved several hundred in her likeness from different woods.


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