Maybe the arrowheads my father found in Alabama as a child and later gave to me were my first inkling that stone could be shaped to suit our needs.
From my first studio art class at UCSC in 1970 shaping clay, I realized how much my hands wanted to sculpt clay, wood and wax. Art professor and sculptor Doyle Foreman was an early mentor at UCSC and I eventually majored in art. Stone would come later though a UCSC Extension class with sculptor Angelo Grova. Local granite sculptor Peter Hanson taught me about using power tools and encouraged me to try Open Studios, which finally gave me the push to show my work. The experience of meeting and talking to the local art public was invaluable and inspired me to refine my technique and take on larger work.
In that vein, I carved a large marble sculpture for the UCSC Arboretum and have since carved a series of large “garden” sculptures. In the past, time was a problem. Teaching writing at UCSC for 26 years meant reading a lot of student essays and they just kept coming. Now that I’ve retired, I finally have the necessary time, with few distractions, to devote to carving stone and wood, and once again creating bronze sculptures. Since becoming involved in Opens Studios, I broadened my work in bronze, wood and found art while pursuing excellence in the art I create. My sculpture is in private collections in California, Utah, Texas, and New York. Since my early days at UCSC, I have also been writing poetry.
My stone carving is reductive, while writing poetry for me is a kind of accretion, so the contrast is intriguing. Sometimes the stone seems more giving than the word, but both feed my creative spirit.