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After a career in boat building/welding, I finally found that what makes me content, is the ability to create. But that took a long time to figure out, but better late then never! Working in an all men's field taught me a lot about life, and what can be done with a variety of tools. Many lessons in my life that I continue to apply were taught by my co-workers I still consider as friends today. My life so far brought me to my love of wood working now, a passion, I am blessed to enjoy. Allowing me the ability to keep evolving art wise and also hopefully as a person. I do not use any patterns on anything I carve, I do not use anything but wood, and refuse to compromise on quality of wood by switching to plywood or partial board. I use only glass eyes, which are longer lasting and have better clarity then plastic ones. On occasion I am gifted or find old barn boards, which I love using. Trees are are used for many things, and carving a piece into a work of art brings that wood, re-newing its life once more. I am fascinated with grains and knots on boards and try to use them in some part of the carving process. I use chisels, power tools from the beginning cut out, and chisels generally in the finish process when it getting close to the shape I want to archive. Most never realize the time carving takes a person, I know I did not till I began working with wood. The process begins with several sketches, then the cut out; wood is added in layers if needed, this would also include side fins etc.; then the 'chunking' as I call it begins, which is a way of saying a lot of grinding, this gives the shape, details and depth to the piece. The next step are the fine details which a dremel or chisels are used. Then there is a lot of sanding, from a course grit to a finish fine grit. Most of what I carve is painted in watercolors or acrylics, but sometimes the wood will appear better using stains. Most of the realistic fish have scales which are drawn on the body of the fish before the painting can begin, and this might take over an hour to do. The with several pictures in hand the painting begins. After the carving has been allowed to dry for 24 hours, the sealing of the piece will begin using a marine grade varnish which also has a UV protectant in it. 4-8 coats are required depending on the piece, and each must be allowed to dry at least 12 hours in between. The back once all the coats have been applied, must be cleaned up and then sanded. After the wire hanger (if its a hanging piece) has been placed on the back, the piece is named, signed, and dated by wood burning. This makes each piece unique and a collectible artwork. So now you know my 'secrets'! I welcome questions about my work anytime, and try to help those beginning too. My Native American background has brought me much, including my love of my life and 3 rescued cats. Life is good.
If you need additional pictures of any artwork listed here or more of my work please also visit yessy.com I am listed there under Lisa Ruggiero. Thank you!
Our web site also includes close ups and other work too.