WWWoodcarver Ezine
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Carvers' Companion Gateway


by Kathleen Menéndez

Pyrography News From Around the World

Special Issue: Page two, other pyrography news

Richard Withers' Visit to the United States

Richard Withers was back in the USA this year. He spent time in Lancaster, Pennsylvania (Fox Publishing), Baltimore, Maryland, Washington, DC, and Falls Church, Virginia (Northern Virginia Carvers). This last stop was a chance for Rita Ferrara and me to have a nice visit with Richard over dinner and talk "shop," then afterwards proceed to the Carving Center across the street where the Northern Virginia Carvers have a workshop at the high school available for their use each Thursday afternoon and evening. Richard was a big hit and gathered a good-sized group of pyros and others wanting to see his work and hear his ideas. He gave a demo of his technique and even gave critiques and suggestions of pyro work on display by the various members who had brought work to show. Everyone was delighted with his visit and glad to welcome our guest from faraway Wales. As luck would have it, several high school students and the high school art teacher, John Ballou, were working in the shop that night, too, preparing their pieces for their upcoming show for the International Baccalaureate examiner. They also were invited to see the impromptu pyro exhibit.

A Woodburning Tutorial for Beginners

Gordon Paterson found out about the following and passed the information on to the IAPA members mailing list. Thank you, Gordon.

On the L. S. Irish website, linked here, is a woodburning tutorial, including a step-by-step project of a carousel horse (complete with pattern) designed specifically for beginners using a nonvariable heat basic woodburning tool. It is very nicely presented and an excellent resource.

Harp Corrigan's Project Is Coming Down the Home Stretch

Robert "Harp" Corrigan's on-line project to build a Celtic lap harp is already into ten chapters. All the steps completed so far are posted on his website and you can still follow the entire process by linking here to his East-Wood Products Studio website. In the tenth chapter, the major components are completed and in place. Soon he will be into decorating his harp with Celtic designs in pyrography.

Vern's Special Story

Carved wood cane with pyroengraved detailing by Vernon Robinson (on left)
*The chimp picked the title name

CanadianVernon Robinson "The Stick Man" carves unusual hiking staffs and canes and details them with pyrography. He has already been featured on Canadian television and is going to be featured in the next issue of the WWWoodcarver E-Zine in conjunction with another totally different "special" topic, which for now I'll leave as a surprise.

However, like Russ Garner, Vern was also involved in a serious motorcycle accident some years ago, and has his own special story. In his interesting autobiography on his website (linked to his name), he tells how he got started in his carving--and the rest of his life--when he carved his first cane. After various surgeries, he required the cane for the physical support; however, as Vern says, "Surprisingly, this carving also provided me emotional and spiritual support. The art reconnected me to self and to nature."

The Author

Kathleen M. Garvey Menéndez learned her pyrography techniques in Guatemala in 1975-1977. Her sister, artist Sharon H. Garvey, later joined her there to collaborate on a pyrography project designed to promote this art form in the United States by means of a didactic book and a pyrography tool made by Navarro of Mexico.

Thanks to the internet, January 2000 marked the beginning of the fourth year of articles on pyrography for the WWWoodc@rver E-Zine, started January 1997, and the third year of the E-Museum of Pyrographic Art, which opened January 1998. In March of that year, the International Association of Pyrographic Artists (IAPA) was formed and members began meeting on line. Linked from the E-Museum's Café Flambé, which hosts the IAPA meetings, is the E-Group mailing list, member list, and chat forum.

© 2000 Kathleen M. Garvey Menéndez, all rights reserved.

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