Canadian eh?

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I didn’t realize how much this happy dancing bear looks like a maple leaf.

But, on going through my photo bank he really does.  Maybe not 100% maple leaf ( what leaf has a belly button?)  And not the kind of Maple Leaf that plays with a stick and a puck.  But, the maple leaf forever kind of a maple leaf.

There is a Canadian connection, after all he was carved by a Canadian so maybe there is the Canuck spirit involved eh ?

This little guy (less than 6 inches tall if we still think in inches) I carved from Brazilian Soapstone and the colours are fantastic if I say so myself.

Greens , browns, black and cream all on one happy hear.

The dancing bear/leaf balance is just right as well. No chance that this guy would wobble unless someone picked him up and put him down on the wrong foot – (which has been known to happen when I bring my art of summer shows).

If you would like to see more of my work and the pieces that are available for sale;

Please visit my website at http://www.johdansoapstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by

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Frozen

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No I am not going to break into the Disney show tune.  It is freezing cold out there and this carver is like a block of ice.  It’s even to cold to fire up the chainsaw and hack out a bear from it.

No, it’s so cold that I have been going back through my carvings of polar bears and ice floes and thinking about how all of these animals with cold weather protection manage out there.

They just keep moving.  That’s a good plan for us two legged creatures too.

Keep warm.

If you would like to check out more work from my website

Please visit http://www.johdansoapstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by

The Artsy one

I have carved stone and built race cars

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Too begin with a person  might not have been earmarked as the artsy one. And in fact, I was asked if I would like to leave high school and be a mechanic instead of going to class.  In fact, that was what I wanted to do.

7,000 hrs plus of training to be a mechanic and I am still the artsy one and a Class A mechanic.

I tell people; maybe it’s the fact that I can use tools

It definitely is the fact that I make something that wasn’t here before and that no one else can do but the big reason …I see things in rocks.

I know a guy could be locked up for that or become the next social media darling but, I see bears , eagles, snakes , penguins – different things in different rocks.  That’s what makes me the artsy one I think.

Being artsy definitely isn’t because I sport a fancy wardrobe.carving2

or my use of colour (especially being that I am blue green colour blind)

So it must be that rocks talk to me and I carve rocks .Everyone should be so lucky.

Life is good.

If you would like to check out what artsy means to me. Visit my website to see and buy some finished pieces of my art, please stop by;  http://www.johdansoaptoneart.com

Thank you for looking in

Getting stone

Bear on rock 001

Yes getting stone, not getting stoned.  I know what you were thinking out there.

My high is seeing a stone, boulder , rock and knowing that there is (in the case of this photo) a bear waiting to come out.

Sometimes it can be difficult when I work in a particular type of stone.  Soapstone is the favourite for me.  Not every stone wholesaler is big on soapstone. Despite the  push on for a while for soapstone sinks and whisky ice cubes (yes that was a thing)  it is easier to find; marble , alabaster etc.. unless you have a wholesaler or a friend who is using a big rock as a something to hold their pool cover in place (true story).  But the artist will always find his material some how.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t see myself as Michelangelo, more like a journeyman artist, called to do their art at the expense of a ‘real’ job.

What is real about 9-5 , or clocking in anyway?  It’s a steady pay cheque definitely and cane be satisfying if you have a career you at least enjoy but the stones are calling my name.  And in the new year this is still true.

Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.
Michelangeo

The man knew his stones.

If you would like to check out some of my work that is for sales; please visit

http://www.johdanstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by.

Belly button – can you find it?

Every artists has some way of making their art show a bit of their personality and make the artwork unique.

I didn’t think too much about this as I am more of a journeyman artist.  Get out there work the stone, carve out what is inside. But,I do have a signature at least for every dancing bear I have ever made.

They have belly buttons.

You would have to see them in person or better yet buy one to see it but if you do have the chance, take a look. The dancing bears all have belly buttons.  I have watched a zillion nature programs and I am still not sure if the bears made of muscle and fur have belly buttons but, mine do.

I started to add belly buttons when I started carving and only the dancing bears got this little bit of eccentricity or artistic license. It wouldn’t  be recommended to   turn over a 110 lb bear like Bonneville to see if he has one.

bonneville-the-bear.jpg

or

Puddin The Walrus
Puddin The Walrus

http://johdansoapstoneart.com/product/mammals-animals-soapstone-sculpture-walrus-puddin/

And dancing bears are not only beautiful but, also balanced.  If , the bear doesn’t go back onto the correct foot we have crashing bear, (with a belly button).

Most of my nature art has been named by me once they are fully complete.  Like a ship being christened.  C. Farley, Puddin’, Bonneville, Exit Stage Right… Not your average names for wildlife but, they are part of my stone family until they become part of a clients’ so…

belly buttons for dancing bears and familiar names for other pieces of my stone art.

If you would like to check out more about me and my work, head over to

http://www.johdanstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by.

New Year , new stone

Happy New Year!

Most people would say at the end of one year and the beginning of the next that they are going to turnover a new leaf.  I hope to turnover a new stone.

When boulders into bears is your business (love it when alliteration comes together), I hope that I find at least one special rock that desperately wants to become a bear or an eagle, or a walrus ..

Every year for the last 12 I have found enough rocks to keep the rock bin mostly full and the carving tools operating at a decent clip.

Soapstone is my preferred rock but I have been known to work with alabaster and limestone and once in awhile to build inukshuks in an unpaved parking lot.

My hope for everyone is that they get to do what they love and be with people they love (or at least like enough) and enjoy yourself.

If you would like to see the work I have on my website , please visit

http://www.johdanstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by

Rocks for Christmas!!!

Not too many people would have liked rocks for Christmas.  But I would and I didn’t get any.

Image result for free graphic of sad face

Don’t get me wrong, I had a great holiday season but for someone that turns boulders into bears, getting rocks for Christmas would have been a great thing. The weather is freezing cold here but, the carving shed is always ready to be warmed up and a carver can’t carve without the raw materials – rocks.

I didn’t always think rocks were so great to be honest.

I am not sure if you feel the same but, there is always that one heartbreak from childhood that we relieve over and over again. A bike that we didn’t get, a girl we didn’t get, and it goes on.

As a grown up I am still telling the story of how my two older sisters put a present under the tree for me.  It was wrapped, and wrapped again and wrapped again.  So exciting!

An inside was a rock!

I threw that rock as far as my elementary aged arm could throw it and now as an old guy I want rocks for Christmas.

Life is funny.

If you would like to check out what I do with rocks.  Please visit my website:

http://www.johdanstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by

Carvers, paradise Winter wonderland

This snowy weekend is perfect for carving.

Carving stone, carving snow angels, carving turkey. All you people who think you can get into the act over one weekend as a carver – well,,,

welcome to my world.

Have  fun with being the carving artist this weekend!  The slice you make , the snow you pile is all you.  Even if you have little helpers, or friendly neighbours someone has to direct and be the chief carver in charge .

That would be me at my house and in my carving shed.

The decision for me to carve makes for wonderful art, if I say so myself.

Here Kitty Kitty Bear watching Fish IM110101 017

It make the news sometimes for snow carving, but lots of fun any which way you pile it

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And then if you are lucky enough, it is the carving skills at a table .

clip-art-thanksgiving-dinner-turkey « American Heritage Academy

Be the carver, enjoy the carving and then let me get back to my carving shed so I can carve more art for you to buy.

 

Here a blog there a blog – where to put the bolg

I posted the following blog this morning on my website news page :  http://www.johdanstoneart.com.

But, I miss blogging straight into the web o sphere.  So bear with me those that follow the news and the fb re posts, you will have already seen. this.  Don’t boo just let me know which you like better and if you don’t, every once in awhile you will see 2.

Just getting the feel of this typing for an audience thing.

Thanks for coming by

Whether the  pieces of art sell or not, well that as always is up to the client. If I can have a sense of humour about my art most of the time, that is what I can control.

Pictured here is a spring chicken.  I entered myself in a contest a few years ago which in our circles is called; a juried exhibition.

Sounds quite a bit more professional and fancy to be juried and exhibited instead of shown.  Do dog shows have juried exhibitions?  Just wondering?

Either way,  I think you are supposed to feel better when you get in and worse when you don’t. This spring spring chicken bit of tongue in cheek humour made me smile and didn’t get in.

I think the criteria for the exhibition through the gallery that operated it was;  the change of seasons .  That is pretty all encompassing and could have taken anything from my art world including a collage of nature .  I however veered towards humour.

In case you may need some explaining;  I am a gear head turned artist (therefore a spring was part my stock and trade)  A chicken has the prime of their life and then they are gone, to a pasture or someone’s dinner table.  It might be a stretch for the change of seasons and a stretch for the jurists but, abstract work is entered into exhibitions all of the time and with some of those, you can do a headstand and not figure it out without the little card of explanation.  Love that type of art

This whole carving is solid but I am pretty proud that the old bird looks like he is teetering on the moment of springing off to head for some worms.

Do I wish that I won the contest, of course- winning is the only thing.  But I laughed and humour is an important thing.

I said I would never do events again but…

Image result for graphic of tired old man

Well, I was wrong.  When there is a Christmas show that is close to home and my old stomping grounds I guess I am in.  The Christmas fairy whirled her magic dust and Poof – I am getting show ready.

A small whine here (no cheese) this means a 4 day show and 12 huge Rubbermaid containers full of bears and eagles, a walrus and brochures and certificates and a pen.

In order to be a professional artist you have to get out there physically not just on social media.  Once I am set up, I will be ensconced there for 4 days surrounded by Christmas cheer and the shoppers that go with them.

If only there was snow , then I would sculpt a snow bear outside and pop in once in awhile to see if the stone bears are selling.  If only it were that easy.

I love people that love my work but, the set up and tear down – well I need some good Christmas fairies to help me out there.

Wish me luck and if you want to see my work without visiting; Victoria Hall In Dundas Ontario Canada (yes that was a plug)

Visit: http://www.johdanstoneart.com

Thank you for coming by