Woodcarver List Who's Who: A

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albisso aka Alex Bisso

Be So Good Wood

My carving career started in 1999 thanks to the help of two carvers who are well-known to the woodcarvers e-list. Joe Dillet responded to my questions about drilling a long straight hole through wood by dreaming up a “boring contest” which drew me to the first Great Pig Out. In the same year, again via the e-list, Matt Kelley encouraged me to join a friendship cane exchange. After sending and receiving a few segments, I went to the GPO, met some wonderful carvers and nice people and won some carving tools in the boring contest by successfully drilling a 11/16” hole lengthwise through a 1” diameter x 4’ long stick. Prior to that and starting the cane exchange I had only whittled on a couple of diamond willow sticks but GPO gave me a taste of real carving and some new tools and a new hobby.

During my first year of carving it was about all I could do to get carve something into that little 2” x 2” x 3” block of wood every month for the friendship cane exchange. For a while I was active in the Billings chapter of Montana Woodcarvers Association (MWA) and had the good fortune of being Librarian for the MWA for several years. This gave me easy access to many carving books, videos and periodicals. My first class was with a local carver, Clettis Orthman and I am thankful all the help he has given me. Since then I have been fortunate to have attended classes with Ivan Whillock, Jeff Phares, Kurt Curtis, Clark Scheibeis, Bob Berry, Ted Richmond and Bill Judt. I make a little money to support the carving hobby by selling some cottonwood bark, cottonwood root and occasionally a little bit of diamond willow and I call this little business Be So Good Wood.

I really enjoy collecting the carving stock and it keeps me outside and active. Actually, between this, fishing, family responsibilities and a couple of sports, I have little time for carving. However, I still keep my tools sharp and usually I am working on some walking sticks or canes and perhaps a bark carving. And occasionally I get motivated to do or finish something more significant. I have not settled on a particular type of carving and it is likely that I will never do so.

I have a rudimentary Be So Good Wood website that I built years ago and now seem unable to update (but it still seems to serve me adequately). It mainly contains a link to my PictureTrail albums where I do a better (but not good) job of keeping pictures in my carving and fishing albums updated. The link to my PictureTrail albums is .

Please feel free to e-mail me at if you have any questions about my work or if you think I might be able to help you with any found wood interests.


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