Hi, my name is Jim Tharp and I started relief carving about 1 1/2 years ago. I’ve been into pyrography (wood burning) for a long time and the walking sticks I’ve done go back about 20 years along with some of the personal plaques made for family & friends.
My first carving was the tall Santa in December 2011 done with nothing but a set of 30 year old X-Acto knives just to see if it was something I might like. I then got a couple of Flex-cut blades for Christmas and started relief carving of the birds. Since then I’ve filled 2 tool boxes with assorted knives (and protective gloves!), gouges, files, saws, rotary tools as I find a need to take my skills to higher levels. The most recent item completed as of Summer 2013 is the panel of hummingbirds and I’m currently working on the Rhododendron relief.
I have about 15 ongoing projects and I travel around the Northwest talking to other woodcarvers and craftsmen who are willing to share their knowledge and ideas. I prefer to use found/castoff wood from store bins or forest floor as well as basswood purchased as needed.
In talking to other people I have helped them in purchases of beginner sets of carving knives and basic starter items (protective gloves!) so they can find their own paths in woodworking.
My direction is to begin consignment projects such as pet portraits as shown in my pictures of our cat JuJu as well as any favorite animal, bird, religious or sports theme carving or burning. Prices will be negotiated depending on time and scope of project.