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How I got into woodcarving…

Alistair park woodcarverI was born and brought up in a town on the edge of Britain’s industrial West Midlands. After finishing a Zoology degree, I spent several years travelling and working abroad, in between stints of living back around the Midlands. It was during this time that I began woodcarving.

I began whittling wood with an Opinel lock knife (see below) in 1994 whilst working at a youth hostel in Ironbridge, UK. It gave me an easy-to-carry way of carving objects from bits of wood that I found, whilst moving around and living out of a rucksack for long periods of time.

 

 

 

Opinel knife

More recently, I completed an honours degree in Three Dimensional Design (Designer Maker) in Exeter and have remained based in the West Country ever since. I still use the same knife on some carving projects, along with power tools and a wide range of traditional carving chisels and gouges (some of which are over a hundred years old).

I am always interested in commissions and thoroughly enjoy the variety and challenges that they bring. Past ones have included carving large outdoor sculptures, a wedding anniversary bowl, small stamps with logos on for a ceramicist, restoring a badly damaged sculpture by a renowned Zambian carver and making large, heavy oak benches on site from locally-grown timber. I also teach woodcarving to groups or individuals. Over twenty years of experience have given me the knowledge and skills to enjoy taking on a wide diversity of projects at any scale. If you have any ideas, please feel free to contact me and we can discuss it further.

 

Woodcarving with a knife in the Alps

 

The objects which I make reflect my interest in craft skills. I am fascinated by the stories associated with objects made by hand, whether they come from collecting the raw materials, forming the object itself or its existence after it leaves the maker and goes out into the world.

Want to know more? Take a peek at My CV.