THE ART OF WOOD CARVING & WOODWORK

Luke & Elizabeth Jepson

Luke Jepson was born and raised in Longville MN. He has a passion for making and creating and been making things from an early age and has continued to do so either out of metal, wood or leather. He makes hand forged ironwork, hardware, tools and knives. As well as spoons carved by hand with axe and knife. He is joined by his wife, Elizabeth, who makes earrings out of wood and leather, and also makes painted wooden signs. “Jack of all trades, master of none, oftentimes better than master of one.”

Bob Seemann

Ever since a shop teacher introduced Bob Seemann to the joy of working with wood, it’s been his life-long passion. Over the last 40 years, he’s built everything from custom cutting boards to armoires and from grandfather clocks to saunas. In his shop in Longville, Bob works with oak, maple, walnut, cherry, birch, mesquite and pine.

Hal Bitzer

Hal started carving around 1990. For Hal carving is therapeutic and relaxing and it has also given him the opportunity to learn more about his Scandinavian heritage. Hal has taken classes with instructors from Norway and Sweden, learning kolrosing, chip carving, bentwood and creating shrink boxes.

 

 

Dave & Kathy Towley

In our wood turning, we strive to marry form with function so as to please the eye as well as to satisfy the hand. Self-taught, this journey of discovery continues to surprise and delight us as we never fully know just what we may find around the next ‘turn’. In our work we hope that you too will find a quiet pleasure in the nature of the wood transformed.

Ken & Charlotte Johnson
Northwoods Sleigh Company

Charlotte and Ken Johnson are Northwoods Sleigh Company. They are of Scandinavian decent (Swedish and Norwegian) and have been handcrafting Scandinavian gift items for over 35 years. They make delicate wooden trays in several sizes. The trays are constructed with compound mitered finger-joints at all corners. Additional, they make a line of decorative wooden sleighs patterned after those used by emigrants for logging and farming. They also make small Tomtens (dolls) to complement the sleighs. All of their products are designed, hand-crafted and merchandised only by them. They have participated in and sold their artifacts at numerous Scandinavian Festivals.

 

Jerry Mollberg​

Jerry Mollberg started carving songbirds and Santa’s in 1987. He has carved many items in wood including caricatures, realistic style carvings, relief, birds and Native American and trapper busts. He typically uses basswood, butternut and cottonwood bark as a medium. He has taught classes for several community education communities, the Lakes Area Carvers Club in Forest Lake, Minnesota and at Pioneer Park in Phoenix, Arizona.

Dave Hamre, Oak Lake Woodworking

Dave Hamre has enjoyed woodworking his entire life. Now retired, the has more time to work on projects. His work includes diamond willow fire pokers and hot dog sticks, growth charts, charcuterie boards, live-edge shelves, bird houses, and boot pullers. Dave sources much of his wood from fallen trees on his property and diamond willow from his aunt’s property.

Bob & Jeannine Moylan – Designs by BJM.

Bob and Jeannine Moylan custom make campfire pokers and stainless marshmallow sticks. They are made from metal that is purchased locally. Natural wood and antlers are used for rustic handles and sport team logos are applied to wood handles.

Greg Kirchhoff

Gregory Kirchhoff has made cribbage boards and other hand-crafted wood products for gifts and special occasions in the past. After retiring, he expanded his interest to include wine caddies, cutting boards, and lawn games. And with the birth of their first grandchild, he has diversified to include wooden baby and toddler toys. Greg has combined his attention to detail, from his career as an accountant, and love of woodworking, to handcrafted, beautiful and functional items for the family.
Greg uses domestic wood, primarily maple, walnut, and cherry, and accents with exotic woods. His process utilizes a combination of hand and power tools, including chisels, routers, drills, crosscut saw, table saw and scroll saw. The cutting boards and baby/toddler toys are finished with food grade oils and waxes, and non-toxic paint. All other products are finished with a water-based polyurethane varnish.

Dan Hensch – Dan’s Woodshop

Dan Hensch enjoys working with wood. He uses anything from pine to Peruvian walnut, but uses mostly maple, cherry, and walnut because he enjoys the contrast they provide and the availability. He starts his projects (cutting boards, coasters, bowls, cribbage boards) by laying out pieces of wood and making a design that is appealing. The pieces are glued together. Dan uses his thickness planer to flatten the wood and get it to the thickness he wants. For the bowls, he uses a table saw or router to dish out the inside and sand the pieces to make them smooth. For the coasters, he cuts them to size by using a round-over bit on the edges. He cuts fingers grooves in the sides of cutting boards to ease lifting the board. Dan creates paddles/oars using a bandsaw, power planer, hand plane, block plane, and spokeshave. He finishes them off with 220 grit sandpaper. Everything that touches food gets finished with mineral oil. His paddles are finished with boiled linseed oil. Most everything else gets finished with a rub on poly that he mixes himself.

Larry Schibonski – Larry’s Woodworks

Larry loves working with domestic and exotic wood. His collection includes salad and yarn bowls, animated toys, coin banks, bird feeders, drink stands, trucks and other ideas still in his head. Speaking to people who are new to woodworking is his passion. Sawing, sanding, gluing and using routers and lathe work are many of the aspects in his shop.

Sue & Ross Cornelison – Woodworking

Sue Cornelison is a children’s book illustrator, illustrating many books for children for over two decades. Along with painting and drawing, recently she has rediscovered her love for clay and uses a whimsical approach to her sculptures as well as utilitarian pieces.

She and her husband, Ross, collaborated on creating pull toys this past ‘covid’ year. She designed and painted and he did all the woodworking. Sue also likes to spin wool and creates felt hats and hand bags. Sue and Ross are new to selling their creations but have enjoyed attending the Art Crawl for many years. They have a seasonal cabin and spend their summers in Hackensack MN.

Sue Vogen

Sue Vogen has been an outdoors person since she came out of the womb and her dad gave her an appreciation of the natural world and that we are stewards, not masters of the earth. She cannot remember a time when she wasn’t creating and about 20 years ago settled on birchbark as her medium. She harvests bark in the spring and fall from blowdowns and standing deadwood, never from live trees. She has a 5 day to 2-week window in the spring after the snow is gone and things have thawed but before it greens up and the heat and bugs arrive so she has to be ready to drop everything and go out into the woods. In the fall it is the same only in reverse. It has to be processed immediately so her life screeches to a halt during this period or 5-7 days. All the dirt, dead cambium, fungus, bugs and forest detritus have to be scrapped off, then the pieces are flattened, weighted and left to dry. She builds her own frames from dimension lumber and sometimes works with contractors to take their bracing which would otherwise go in the dumpster. The frames are sanded and stained, the bark cut into strips and then tacked on. Holes are marked and drilled along the edges, the chip outs are cleaned up with an Xacto knife and any bare wood stained. Then dowels or wood strips are sewed onto the frame using artificial sinew. The bark for each frame is cut from a single sheet and the scraps become flowers, kindling or are sold. Sue excels at tedious and boring, which leaves her mind free to explore the universe for new ideas. The plain frame has evolved into works of art with the addition of river stones, glycerin preserved cedar leaves, die cut branches, leaves, animals and words from birchbark scraps and flamed copper flashing. She makes stone easels for some of the smaller frames. She is currently experimenting with putting birchbark on flat panel doors and then adding a layer of epoxy resin. Since she spends part of the year in Alabama she also has started making frames using Georgia Long Leaf Pine scales as well as incorporating them into her current door projects.

Karl, Pat and Patrick Lamb

The Karl Lamb family was inspired artistically from living and working in Europe. Additionally, they built custom homes for themselves and others along with furniture and other artistic commissions. 

They use many materials to create their art including  burlwood, pine needles, walnut, birch, gourds, etc. Karl, Pat, and Patrick have shown in their works in galleries over the years in Osakis, Walker, and Duluth. The summer of 2020 was their first experience with being invited to an art show outdoors. They sold most of their art at the show and really enjoyed being with other artists and the public because of the feedback that they receive personally.

More of the Lambs’ family work can been seen in Specialty Art Forms.

Joel Soukup

Joel creates and sells a variety of different epoxy related items, including: coasters, coaster four-piece holders, light switch covers, outlet covers, clear epoxy paper weights, wooden toothpick holders, and many smaller items. Almost all pieces incorporate different kinds of wood into them, including the outlet and light switch covers. If a customer wants a specific color or type of wood included in a specific project, that is usually no problem!

Steve & Amy Zapf — Legacy Canoes

In 1967, Mike Zapf from St. Cloud, MN built his first wood strip canoe with his oldest son. The project started a tradition; each of his children when they were over 14 years of age could build a canoe with dad. Word spread of their canoes and Mike’s willingness to help anyone interested in building one.

           Being the youngest of seven, Steve’s first job was to get in the way, but in doing so he got the benefit from learning from all the canoes that came before his in the summer of 1976. Their family had recently joined the MN Canoe Association (MCA) and entered his canoe in the annual Builder’s Contest (for adults), it placed second. For the next couple years their family would build a canoe and enter it in the contest.

           In the summer of 1982 Steve met his future wife Amy. She was attending the College of St. Benedicts for interior design. The next summer they built their first canoe together, it took first place in the MCA’s contest that winter. Amy has worked in her field ever since graduating with over 30 years alone in the furniture business. Her skills in design and color are invaluable in their canoes’ look. 

           Their canoes have changed throughout the years as they mastered new skills. In the mid 90’s, Steve put in his first design in the bottom of a canoe. All wood material used in their side and bottom designs are made from scratch using simple woodworking tools.

           Around 2011 Amy and Steve started getting requests for canoes to be hung up as art in someone’s house. Different sizes have been built of 16, 12, 10, 8, and 6 feet in length.    In the spring of 2013 Steve was awarded an Emerging Artist Award from the Central MN Arts Board and McKnight Foundation. In the fall of 2013 their booth at the Millstream Arts Festival took third place with only a couple art festivals under their belt. In 2019 they placed first at this festival. The canoes they create make a statement in any space of beauty and grace using wood and the passion that was passed on to them from Mike.

           In 2014, Steve took notice of the standup paddle board (SUP) craze and a possible way he could use a SUP as a new canvas. After 3 years of research and developing his own plans he created his first SUP based on techniques he knew. Amy also did her own research and found another method used by builders. They used this new method to create 2 more SUPs after receiving a grant from the CMAB and McKnight Foundation to acquire new equipment and supplies.

           Through the years Steve has instructed many people on how to create their own canoes. He enjoys passing on the satisfaction that creating a canoe brings. Every canoe and SUP offers new challenges and he looks forward to helping others with theirs.

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