Greencrow Creative Resources

   Crow in Flight by Anonymous

This is the page where I display and hope to eventually market my arts and crafts.  Most recent posts are near the top of the page:

Artwork #44 - March 19, 2020
"Snowy Owl and Sun Clock" - Cedar raw edge plank and
Cottonwood Bark Carving Project

"Snowy Owl and Sun Clock"
Wood Burned Landscape on Red Cedar Raw Edge Plank
with attached Cottonwood Bark carved Owl
22" x 17" x 4" 

The cedar plank lay around in my garage for a couple of years.  I always had this idea in my head for it.  Finally got around to doing it this year.  Ordered the clock from online.  The owl was made out of three pieces of discarded cottonwood bark glued together, carved and painted with acrylics.  The wood burned landscape was my first effort using wood burning and I enjoyed the experience.  Learned a lot and will do better next time.  This project is a Christmas present for my son, his wife and my two granddaughters.  "Snowy" the Owl will help them learn to tell time!

Artwork #43 - March 17, 2020
"Goldfish and Waterlilies" Basswood Relief Carving

"Goldfish and Waterlilies"
Basswood Relief Carving painted with acrylics
11 1/2" x 8 1/2" x 2"

Finally completed this project.  It is my first attempt at relief carving.  I enjoyed it and especially the theme of "underwater" life.  I have some ideas for another relief carving with ocean marine life.

Goldfish and Waterlilies
Relief Carving on Basswood
Final Version

I was creating a video about my latest carving endeavours but, unfortunately, it ends abruptly because I ran out of space on my phone. I don't know how to empty my phone video file at the moment. So please excuse the above video's very sudden end. I was almost finished it anyway. I was just about to sign off when it cut out. Enjoy!

Earlier Version of Goldfish and Waterlilies
The top version is much improved

Artwork #43 - February 29, 2020

Froggy Diorama goes on display in glass case in Senior Centre

Video showing Updates to My

Gift to my Granddaughters - A Diorama

of the Traditional Song - "A Froggy Went A Courting"

I've been working on and off on this Wood Carving Diorama for a year or more now--including most of this past weekend--because it's slated to go on display in our Wood Carving display case up at the Senior Centre.  Taking it up there this afternoon.  I also received a special request from my older sister during our telephone conversation last week to give her a video update on the project.  The song "Froggy Went a Courting" has huge significance in our family because my mother taught it to us and sang it to us throughout our younger years.  There's still a lot of work to do on this project, including carving "Uncle Rat" and all the wedding guests.  I hope to have it completely finished to show my granddaughters when they come to spend next Christmas with us.  Enjoy!

Artwork #42 - January 15, 2020
"Blank" Nutcracker Christmas Gift Painted and Decorated

Yesterday, I finished painting and decorating the "blank" nutcracker I received from family for Christmas.  Below is a video and photo how he looked shortly after I began drawing and painting out his features:

Video of "Blank" Nutcracker

I received as a Christmas Present

Partially painted Nutcracker

photo taken a few days ago

Completed Nutcracker "Guy" and 

beginning of 2020 "Snowmageddon"

video shot yesterday
Yes I've enjoyed working on my Nutcracker, which I have named "Guy", pronounced "Gee" in French.  I plan to package and store him carefully for next Christmas and then decorate him further with a string of clear battery-operated mini lights twined on the star he's holding.  Should be stunning by the fireplace next Christmas!

Artwork #41- November 9, 2019

Unpainted Froggy [not "Groggy" as I misspelled on YouTube]

Froggy is Finished Video

Here's a brief video of the finished "Froggy" in his permanent setting with "Missy Mousie" with her "Mousie House" ...which I made out of raw cottonwood bark and papier mache. This carving is a tribute to my own mother, who sang the "Froggy Went a Courting" children's song to me as a child...and to my two granddaughters, aged 5 and 5 months. The Mousie House tableau passed the "grandchild" test this past weekend, when my 5 year old granddaughter visited and pronounced it a rousing success--by playing with it most of the weekend. She liked the little "trousseau chest" in the "Mousie House" the best. That, I did not carve, but purchased at a Swedish Christmas Craft fair on the weekend.

The "Mousie House" is a rustic "doll house" for my granddaughters to play with. It was made from one big piece of cottonwood bark. I sawed it into three pieces and glued them together with many layers of papier mache on the inside...forming them into a circle. Then I cut the mousie hole. Then I glued the house onto a wooden "lazy susan" that's commonly sold by IKEA. The house can thus be moved in a circle. Right now I'm in the process of making a stone and cement "fireplace", to be placed opposite the door on the back interior wall of the mousie house. The fireplace will have a wooden mantle and over the mantle will be hung a small, framed picture of "Uncle Rat". In the song "A Froggy Went A Courting" Uncle Rat plays an important role as he has to give his consent to the wedding.

I am also going to make a small wooden table and tiny stools for the wedding feast. Finally, I will knit/crochet a tiny, red, circular rug for the house. This rug will also serve as mousie's bed.

NOTE: The video above ends abruptly, because apparently I'm out of "storage" on my phone. So will have to look into deleting some items. Well, onto other projects now.

Unpainted "A Froggy Went a Courting"

I haven't updated this page since last July, Whew! That's a long time. I've been working on some projects, however, and the video shows one of them, still unfinished. I deliberately take photos and make videos of unpainted carvings because sometimes they ultimately look their best when unpainted/unstained. This one will be painted/stained and I have some great ideas about that process. In the meantime, enjoy my unpainted "A Froggie Went a Courting".

Here's the object of Froggy's affections, Missy Mousie:
Artwork #40- July 4, 2019

Walking cane carved from Basswood and
an old broom hand

Hi all.  This is my latest wood carving.  The crow's eyes are two obsidian beads I had left over from another craft project.  It's better when I can use real stones instead of synthetic.  I put small brass nails in the holes for "pupils".  This carving was kind of rushed fact I really needed a functional cane, due to increasing mobility issues related to osteoarthritis in both knees.

The cane works great….and is a great signature piece due to my love of all things crow.  I even showed it to the crows in my neighbourhood.  They were not impressed lol : )

Artwork #39- May 14, 2019

Video #4 of the "Gnome Restoration Project"

Gnomes are Finished Video #4

Apologies for the Bird voices you

will hear throughout the videos.

My very elderly Miniature Diamond Dove

"Desi" will NOT shut up!!!

Hi Fellow Arts and Crafts Enthusiasts...I've finally completed my Gnome Restoration Project.  It took me about a week and a half from start to finish.  View the above four short videos in order of completion, starting with #1 and working upwards. 

I was going to place them permanently [for the summer anyway] in my back garden today but it's raining quite hard so I'll have to wait for the weather to improve before I take my "final" video of the their optimum locations. In the meantime, Enjoy! 

Video #3 of the "Gnome Restoration Project"

Gnome Restoration and Customization
Project - Video #3

Video #2 of the "Gnome Restoration Project"
Gnome Restoration and Customization
Project - Video #2

Video #1 of the "Gnome Restoration Project"

Gnome Restoration and Customization
Project - Video #1
Apologies for the distracting sounds of my 
Miniature Diamond Dove, "Desi",
cooing in the background : (

Above is the first of a series of videos I plan to make showing the restoration stages of my newest art project.  I plan to restore and customize two garden gnomes.  The first gnome shown in the video is a "Swedish Garden Gnome" that we've had in our garden for almost 30 years.  It's in a very decrepit state. I plan to restore, then paint it according to Swedish tradition, before putting it back in my garden.

I think the Swedes invented gnomes. Or, at least the Scandinavians certainly did.  The Swedes call gnomes "Tomtens" and credit them with bringing Christmas gifts to children and animals in the forests and pets in the homes. Below is a painting of a Tomten with a lynx.  

As my project goes forward, I will be updating my readers of its progress. Enjoy!

Swedish Tomten with Lynx

Artwork #38- April 24, 2019

Unicorn Treasure Box

Finally!  My Unicorn Treasure Box is finished.  It took about three months of carving to get this result.... which is still not exactly what I wanted due to rushing towards completion at the end.  Reminds me of one of my favourite sayings.  "Sometimes 'perfection' can be the enemy of the good'.  If I were to attempt to 'perfect' would likely not have been finished for a year or more.  So, I settled for "rustic".  That's what we carvers call something that needed a lot MORE time and effort.

Below is a video describing the details of the project.  Enjoy!

Unicorn Treasure Box Video

Now...on to my next project!!! : )

Artwork #37- March 6, 2019

Wood Carving Display Case
showing Five of Greencrow's Wood Carvings

Here is a video I took recently showing the wood carvings in the display case at the Senior’s Centre where I attend my wood carving class.  I miss my carving art works and look forward to getting all five of them back at the end of March.

Artwork #36- February 8, 2019
Sneak Preview of next wood carving:

Unicorn Basswood - 10"x 6"

This is part of a much larger basswood piece.  The unicorn will be glued to the carved, floral painted lid of a jewellery box--that also has a small, heart-shaped pond with tiny wooden koi swimming in it.  The Unicorn is almost finished, except for some more wood filling, sanding and detail work.  It will have sapphire blue eyes and be painted white with gold details on the horn.  I'm excited about this work because it fulfills my preferred agenda...form WITH function!

Artwork #35- February 6, 2019

Pen, Pencil and Felt Pen Drawing - Nassau at Night - 1974

This is another small drawing from many years ago that started off as a "doodle" while I was at work, talking on the phone.  I had just returned from a vacation in the Bahamas.  This vacation was the first time I'd been to the tropics and saw palm trees.  I was amazed at the graceful way they moved in the wind, particularly seen at night. So the drawing was simply made on 8x10 typing paper and started off being a pen sketch.  I later used a black felt pen and a yellow felt highlighting marker to colour it.  I liked it so much I framed it and hung it in my home where it still hangs more than 40 years later!

Artwork #34 - January 27, 2019

Nude, circa 1978

lol.  I found this small, framed 10" x 9" pencil drawing in a box that had been "up in the attic" for about 20 years.  As I recall, like a lot of my sketches during the years that I worked in an office, it started off as doodling while I was talking on the phone.  That happened many times...I would start doodling and low and behold, eventually would end up with a drawing that I could frame and hang on my apartment wall!  Believe it or not, this is a humourous self-portrait from "back in the day" around 1978.

Artwork #33 - January 25, 2019

Crochet Hassock and "Lumbar" Pillow

Crocheted Hassock and Pillow
Apologies to Viewers as video was
filmed vertically (Oops!)

The old saying "necessity is the mother of invention" certainly applies to this craft.  Due to my recent diagnosis of Arthritis in both knees and ensuing pain...I like to sit with my feet up in a comfortable chair more often now.  I love my rocking chair but didn't have a suitable way of putting my feet up and taking pressure off my knees.  Also the chair lacks lower back support.  So.....I designed and crocheted a small hassock and a pillow which solves both problems.  I used that new big "chunky" wool they're selling now at the craft a size "20" large wooden crochet hook.  I used the most basic crochet stitch, but altered two different colours of wool every second row.  I crocheted in a circle and then decreased the stitches every third stitch to create the top and used a separate length of the same wool to gather the bottom and pull tightly, tying the ends together.

Hassock = 14 inches tall by 14 inches wide
Pillow    =  7 inches wide by 18 inches long

Artwork #32 - November 15, 2018

"Little Green Faerie"
Basswood Carving painted
with acrylics

Little Green Faerie Painted and Completed

As my readers can see above, I finally finished carving and painting my "little green faerie" .  One of the greatest satisfactions of wood carving is simply finishing a project.  In my carving class, so many of my fellow carvers and myself included, start out projects with great enthusiasm but then give up, overwhelmed at all the work they've taken on or discouraged as the project does not meet their dreams and expectations.  This project took an estimated 50 hours of work and I had someone who owns a gallery and sells such objects for a living tall me it is worth about $500.  I am not all that pleased with it and could easily spend another 50 hours on it...but am not going to.  An artist of any stripe needs to know when to "let go and move on".  I'm now working on another project that has more functionality...always a great motivator!

Little Green Faerie - (Unfinished)

This little faerie has taken close to 50 hours so far, and it is only about 3/4 finished.  It's carved from basswood and stands 13 inches high from base to wing tip.  He's sitting on a toadstool and admiring a crystal that he's just found. He still needs to be sanded and stained.  But sometimes, as I've discovered ruefully in my carving career...this stage...the raw stage prior to sanding and sometimes the peak in the artistic value of the work.  I will be inserting tiny glass beads into his downcast eyes and attaching the crystal permanently to his cupped hands.  He'll be stained a very light green with reddish hair.  The toadstool and base will be stained variations of light oak. The little green faerie has just temporarily alighted on the toadstool, momentarily resting during his endless flight across the universe.

Artwork #31 - July 9, 2018

Block Nativity Scene
A "going away" gift for friends

This "Block Nativity Scene" was carved out of basswood.  It is 8" at its tallest point and 6" x 6" square at the base.  After carving each block, I painted the faces with acrylic paint and then varnished it all, including the base [which was constructed from bass wood by my husband] with a clear satin finish.  This nativity scene will shortly become a "going away" gift for a friend, one of a couple that we have travelled with over the years.  They're moving to the BC Interior.  She collects nativity scenes and has dozens from all over the world.  It is hoped that this will make a unique and personal addition to her collection.

Barred Owl 
Cottonwood Bark Carving
Painted with white acrylic paint
22" in height and 6" wide

Here is a carving of a Barred Owl that I did out of Cottonwood bark.  I was inspired to carve a Barred Owl after one landed in the middle of the night with a loud "thump!" on the garage roof just outside my bedroom window last winter.  I awoke with a start and looked out--to see a huge white and brown feathered bird staring back at me.  The owl was about two feet high and about a 3/4 of a foot in width.  It had dark eyes, ringed with circles of white and brown feathers.  We stared at each other for a moment.  I turned to try and wake my husband.  When I looked back, seconds later, it had already flown off into the darkness.  In 30 years of living in this neighbourhood I had never seen an owl, even from a distance...and this one was about four feet away!  It was an almost supernatural experience.

Artwork #30 - May 2, 2018

Sampler video of Small Wood Carvings

Above is a Sampler video of some of the small wooden carvings I've completed recently. I would have preferred YouTube highlight the mouse, the Santa...or the wreath.....but they chose one of my older "walking stick" carvings....Whatever....Below, I have posted photos of each of the "Sampler" wood carvings and details about them.  Enjoy!

Small Wooden Wreath with Bird
9" x 9" around

"Goldfinch Hotel"
Cottonwood Bark Carving
in three pieces View #1
15" x 3 1/2"

"Goldfinch Hotel" View #2
Two main pieces are hollow - suitable for "tea light"
and held together by magnets - small bird in nest fits on top

"Missy Mousie" 
carved from yellow cedar and painted
holding "Wedding Bouquet" made
from artificial flowers

"Swirling Santa" 
carved from yellow cedar and painted
8 1/2" x 2 1/2"

Artwork #29 - March 11, 2018
"The Northern Flicker Family"

Wood Carving/Mobile/Wind Chimes

Northern Flicker Close-Up
Parent has beetle in mouth
beetle carved out of cottonwood bark

I worked on this wood carving/mobile/wind chimes on and off for about four months.  The project evolved from being 3 indeterminate birds--to being Northern Flickers.  This bird is common in the Pacific Northwest and likes to live in suburban areas where there are lots of's main diet is beetles.  It can be heard in the early mornings...rat-tat-tat-ing loudly against the metal chimney on your roof.  When it does that, it's calling to its mate.  People who don't take an interest in birds assume it's a woodpecker.  But it is not.

When you look at the Northern Flicker sitting in a tree it is a very nondescript bird...brown feathers with black markings.  It's when it takes flight that you realize what a truly gorgeous bird it is.  The underside of its wings are feathered in neon orange...which flickers brightly as it flies off...hence the name "flicker".

My carved mobile is 30 cm in height and 30 cms in width.  The branch the birds are perched on is "found wood" gathered from the trail I walk daily with my dogs...probably wild cherry or cottonwood.  The birds are carved from yellow cedar which was locally milled and given to me free by a friend.  The wings and legs of the parent bird were carved separately from the body and attached with glue.  Strips of real copper were then glued to the underside of the wings to achieve the "flicker" effect. Enjoy!

Photo of Northern Flicker in the Wild

Artwork #28 - January 23, 2018
Wood carving "Wood Duck and Bullrushes"

"Wood Duck and Bullrushes"
Barkwood, Yellow Cedar wood carving
painted with acrylics


Wood Duck with Bullrushes

wood carving by greencrow

The above wood carving of a Wood Duck in a pond with bullrushes or as "cattails" as they are sometimes my latest art work.  It is 14" long x 4"wide and 12" tall.  As I say in the video...this artwork grew out of a piece of found cottonwood bark that resembled a wood duck.  I carved it to make it look MORE like a wood duck, then glued it to a piece of yellow cedar that I had carved to look like a small pond.  The wood duck's eyes are naturally bright red.  To get this colour, I found red jade beads in a local bead shop.  To finish off  the piece, I assembled bull rushes out of cottonwood bark, barbecue skewers for the stems.  The "reeds" are carved out of cedar planks used to cook fish on the barbecue.

After carving and gluing the pieces together, I used acrylic paints to paint the duck, pond and bulrushes.  My wood carving instructor advised me to allow the water paint to "bleed" naturally into the wood...I think this was good advice.  Lots of fun carving this piece and creating a tribute to one of the most beautiful birds in the Pacific North West.

Photo of Wood Duck that I

Used as a guide to paint my wood duck

Artwork #27 - December 3, 2017
"Dino" Wood carving of dinosaur embryo carved from found cedar driftwood.

"Dino" wood carving
7 1/2" length x 4 1/2" width by 3" high

I had a lot of fun creating this carving from a piece of round driftwood that was lying around the house.  I don't really know where it came from, but it's been in the house forever, long before I started carving.  Generally, it has been kept in a cardboard box of stuff my partner saved from his sailing trip to the South Pacific and Australia.  There were some seashells, pieces of coral and fishing glass balls.  The egg-shaped wood was in a box with that stuff.  Finally, I found it lying around somewhere and looked at it.  By this time I was into wood carving and so naturally imagined what I could carve out of it. "Dino" evolved from looking up on the Internet what a dinosaur embryo in an egg looked like. I carved the little guy and sanded him and the egg, then put a coat of verathane on it.  I had to be careful, as the wood was very fragile and broke several times while carving. It almost split in half at one point and I had to use wood filler to keep it in one piece.  There's an abandoned crow's nest in a nearby tree and the neighbor has agreed to give me the crow's nest to put "dino" into.  I think the nest of twigs will set off this artwork perfectly.  The more I look at this carving, the more I like it.

"Dino" 7" x 4 1/4" carved from cedar driftwood
- in his nest made from an abandoned
crow's nest and moss

Artwork #26 - November 18, 2017
Two Bird-related carved wooden knick-knacks

Two Bird-Related 
Carved Wooden Knick Knacks

Both these items are mean to be displayed on the coffee table or similar place in the home.  They were fun to do and easy.  Both utilized local "found" wood.  This will no doubt add to their value in the eyes of the intended recipients.  Both stand about 10 " high.  

Artwork #25 - September 16, 2017
Two Fun and easy to make Paper Mache Piñatas

Paper Mache Bird Piñata
Height 18" Width 11"
Wingspan 20"

Paper Mache Pig Piñata
Height 10 1/2 " Width 8"
Wingspan 11"

Two Fun Paper Mache Piñatas Video

I've finally got around to finishing this post on September 27, 2017. Every once in a while I get a craving to do something in paper mache. This is one of the art forms that I believe should be taught as a mandatory part of every elementary school art program. It's easy, fun, extremely adaptable and can be functional as well as imaginative. In fact, imagination has almost no limit when it comes to making something out of paper mache. And the tools you need are generally found around the home: paper like newspaper or paper grocery/lunch bags ripped into strips; flour and water in equal amounts put into a bowl and mixed with a bit of salt; balloons, cardboard and masking tape to create the structure/form/shape of the object; tissue paper and paper glue (I use Modge Podge) a paint brush to apply/glue the tissue paper "skin" to the object. I used yellow tissue paper for the bird and orange tissue paper for the beak and feet; and pink tissue paper for the pig; different coloured acrylic paints and felt pens also add to the decorative elements. Oh, and I used an awl and small hammer to perforate the "skin" of the piñata to stick the feathers in, super easy...I didn't even use glue.

You will also need patience to create your paper mache item. It takes about a week to complete a work the size of the ones shown here. Two days for the original paper mache application to dry over the balloons and cardboard, then another day for the tissue paper "skin" to dry. Then a day or so to add the decorative elements like feathers, acrylic paint and felt pen artwork.

The Internet is full of information about how to make items out of paper mache
. So, do yourself and your loved ones a favour. Make a date with a paper mache project and...have some FUN!

Artwork #24 - September 2, 2017
Painting that is also a Family History

"Sunrise on Howe Sound"
37" x 25"
Acrylic on Canvass
all framed and ready to go

Sunrise On Howe Sound

(off "Screaming Mommy Point")

Hi folks.  Now, for a complete change of pace from the geopolitical events of the past while, I am posting my latest artwork.  It's a rather large (for me) acrylic-on-canvass painting depicting the three sailboats our family has owned over the years since we were in our 20's.  The video also takes readers and viewers on a brief tour of my art studio, located in a converted bedroom in our home.

As I say in the video, I was disappointed and frustrated by my artistic efforts as a young person, although my father kept pressuring me to become a "Grandma Moses"-style artist.  Finally I have come to accept and appreciate my rather simplistic style and recognize that it would suit an illustrator of children's books.  I did write and illustrate a children's book for my granddaughter a year or so ago and made a video which appears below:

"Froggy and Oh! Oh!

A Children's Story by Greencrow

(there are two wood carvings to go with

this book and photos can be seen on my

Like the storybook "Froggy and Oh! Oh!" above, the inspiration for the painting "Sunrise on Howe Sound" was my granddaughter... and perhaps other grandchildren who may come along.  So in the years to come they could have a clear "picture" of the sailboats associated with our long history of sailing on the waters off British Columbia and, in my husband's case...sailing to Australia, New Zealand and return back in the 1970's. My children have always teased me about my fear of sailing while "heeled over" in heavy winds...and so this appears as the subtitle to the painting ("Off Screaming Mommy Point").  There is an actual point in House Sound that our family has dubbed "Screaming Mommy Point"...but you won't find it on any navigational chart ; )

We are very pleased that our granddaughter has shown a keen interest in sailing. so the painting above will give some context to this very enjoyable activity that our family has pursued for 54 years.

Artwork #23- June 22, 2017

Carved Wooden "Viking Prow" Walking Stick 
by greencrow

Hi is a video showing the latest carving by Greencrow.  It's a walking stick I plan to use to walk to the top of a local mountain along a popular trail called the "Coquitlam Crunch".  I hope I don't scare the other hikers with this menacing stick!  The top with the Viking design is carved from basswood. I got the design off the Internet.  It's the prow of an ancient Viking Ship.  The bottom (staff) is an old broom handle that I whittled into shape.  I epoxy glued a piece of copper piping at the bottom.  I also put a band made from a thin sheet of copper foil around the base of the head.

The walking stick is about 3 3/4 feet.  The top is 11 inches tall and 3 1/3 inches at the widest part.  I stained it with a mixture of paint thinner and oil paint and then put 2 coats of satin veneer on it.  The eyes are green glass beads glued into the wooden sockets

I am going to add this to my collection of Arts and Crafts on my Special Page that you can access through the link at the top of the main page. Enjoy!

Artwork #22- April 22, 2017 "Bird Carousel" found wood "branches" carry carved wooden "comfort birds" in a merry circle
Hand-carved Spalted Maple Wood birds
in a twig "Bird Carousel"

This artwork is a show stopper for a couple of reasons.  First of all, it is the first time I've been able to upload a video onto my blog from my new IPhone.  If this works, I can use it on my other pages.  The "Bird Carousel" was inspired during a Skype conversation I was having a few months ago with my sister.  She lived in Kenya at one point and collected wood carvings during her stay.  While talking with her I noted a mobile hanging above her head.  It was a wood carving of birds on a branch "carousel".  I have replicated it in the carving above, but of course my birds look nothing like the birds in her carousel...hers were larger, each one was a different species, and I believe they were also painted.  Mine are natural.  I didn't even put a stain or a wax on them because I liked the natural wood so much.  Interestingly, I don't know what type of wood my birds are carved out of because a fellow carver gave the wood to me and even HE did not know what kind of wood it was.  Also, interestingly, I have been searching the local forests for another branch just like the one I found in the video above.  When looking for that branch, I found it within minutes.  But that was obviously "beginners' luck" because several days of intense searching have turned up no further suitable three-pronged branches.  I will have to search further afield, because I want to make more "Bird Carousels'".  They are quick to carve and fun to assemble.

I have had a lot of positive reaction to my "Bird Carousel", including an offer to buy it from me...but it is not for sale.

As a bonus on this post, I am going to add a photo of the "Bird Carousel" that belongs to my sister and provided the inspiration for my carousel. 

Hanging Birds hand carved mobile
from Kenya, Africa. These
Kenyan birds are white-browed robin chats.
They are a rather shy woodland species, hiding under bushes and shrubs and a little larger than our North American robins.

UPDATED:  I ran into my fellow carver today, the one who gave me the wood for my birds.  He says he now remembers what kind of wood it is..."spalted Maple".  This is a very valued wood for woodcarver due to its unique grains.  So, I'm very pleased I didn't stain or wax it.

Artwork #21- April 11, 2017  Knitted Outfit for Doll - using Disney Movie "Frozen" design

My granddaughter loved the movie "Frozen" when she came for her Christmas visit.  We sang the hit song from the movie "Let it Go" while watching this video.  After she left, I decided to knit her baby doll that I gave her last summer a winter outfit.  Dress, Toque, mitts and shoes...and even a little cape...that doubles as a bag to hold all the clothing so the small pieces won't get lost...all done in the colours and style of the dress "Elsa" wore in the video linked above.  As I've already told readers...I can't really knit.  I call it "Pidgin" knitting...I just take the wool and needles and fashion the creation as I go along.  Something like sculpture...hack off everything that doesn't look like a [whatever].

Here is the completed outfit...that shows you don't always have to be serious when knitting...sometimes you can just knit for fun, or love and let your imagination go wild.

Eva's Doll wearing the Knitted Outfit

Doll Dress, Mittens, Hat and shoes

Close-up of Doll's Hat, Shoes and Mitts
Happy to say they all fit even though
I never measured...and Eva is very
happy with her Doll's new clothes!

Artwork #20- February 6, 2017 "Hand knit Toque and Scarf -

Toque and Scarf in Red, Black and White yarn

It's been a long time since I've put some knitting up on the Crafts Page of this fact it's quite a while since I put anything up...and that is too bad.  I've been doing a lot of arts and crafts...just nothing that I wanted to display...until this hat and scarf set which I knit out of left-over yarn.  It took me about a week to knit.  I really enjoyed the colour matches and the thick wool...which made knitting a lot faster.  I also knit three dog sweaters for my fur children. I used the same design for the dog sweaters as I used in the photos of dog sweaters below.  In the photo below you can see me wearing the hat and scarf, with my pets wearing their sweaters. Knitting is fun, creative and functional!

Webmaster in Toque and Scarf
Dogs in sweaters

Artwork #19 - June 27, 2016 - "Siberian Santas" mixed medium - painted barkwood carvings hung on 19 1/2" x 16 1/2" oil painting on canvas

"Siberian Santas"

This project started off as a quartet of Bark Carving Santas. Cottonwood bark, found on the riverbanks in Northern BC, is an excellent wood to easily carve fanciful figures. I decided to paint mine and also sprinkle a bit of glitter on their beards and fur caps. The Santas are on average 6" high by 2" wide. Then, I had to figure out how to display them. The Santas are free standing and I could group them on a table with some evergreen at Christmas...but I want to display them year round on the wall! I had an old canvass lying around that had some oil paint on it...but it was definitely a reject. So, I covered it in white oil paint and then black oil paint you can see above...rendered it into a scene of a snowy, moonlit Siberian night. Next, how to hang the Santas on the canvass? I wanted to be able to remove them, so gluing was not an option. Well, I nailed a one inch brass nail half way onto the back of each Santa.  Then I used an awl to puncture a small hole in the canvass where I wanted to hang each Santa and, voila!  Each Santa is quite securely attached to the canvass.

Here's a close up of the quartet:

I wish my cell phone photos picked up more detail from the faces of the Santas....they have quite amusing and unique expressions. Bark Carving is a lot of fun, and easy....and it's nice to go out of the "bark carving" box every once in a while. As I did with these fellows.

Artwork #18 - June 9, 2016 'Greenman Traditional Wood Spirit' 

Traditional "Green Man" or Wood Spirit
carved from Basswood.
He's 9" long x 8" wide x 2" thick

"Greenman", a type of "wood spirit", is a popular traditional subject for wood carvers.  They can be made out of wood, iron or ceramic and are generally painted green.  I added a few drops of green oil paint to my "golden oak" oil wood stain and used that, with satisfactory results.  I deliberately made my greenman with crossed eyes...because I plan to hang him high up on the wall of my deck and  didn't want him staring at me all the time...he's supposed to be looking down from a higher location and staring into space.  It looks better in real life than it does in this photo.

Here is a shot of my Greenman on the Wall of my Solarium, off my Deck.  Generally the Greenmen are hung on fences and walls, outdoors, of course

Greenman hung on outdoor wall

Greenman on wall
side vision, showing some of the underside of the carving

Greenman on Deck Wall with Grape Leaves
and raffia

Artwork #17 - June 9, 2016 'Seahorse Seafood Serving Set" 

I have already posted about the "Seahorse Seafood Serving Dish" (Artwork #14) which is also a wall hanging when flipped over (see photo below) and about the Seahorse Candle (Artwork #12). Well, here's the entire set together...for your edification and enjoyment. I use the candle all the time...the other pieces not so much, although they are on view in my kitchen.

Seahorse Seafood Serving Set

I put some potato chips in the centre section

The Napkin Holder is 10 1/2" tall, 5 1/4" wide, the starfish is 5" tall

The Napkin holder carved from basswood and has a place to store wooden cutlery in the Seahorse's head.  The napkin holder is composed of three parts...the Seahorse, Starfish at each end joined by a base.  I glued and screwed the the three pieces together with brass bracket and brass screws.  Currently, I use the Napkin Holder as a cook book holder.

Artwork #16 - February 12, 2016 'Fancy Party Dress" sewn from scratch for a loved one

I started sewing when I was a teenager and made a lot of my own clothes. I also learned to combine sewing with knitting and crocheting. I'm not great at any of the skills....just good enough to get a lot of pleasure from creating an outfit from "scratch" (not using a pattern...just coming up with a design and measuring and following through). I'm very proud to tell relatives that I once crocheted a pant suit (lined) for myself without a pattern. It was in the days of bell bottoms--and the pant legs were suitably flared. I also made my own graduation dress...a concoction of white lace over satin with satin spaghetti straps. It had a lace bolero jacket to match. It was such a success that my girlfriend bought it from wear for HER graduation!

I like to sew, knit and crochet in the winter months and do gardening and outside hobbies in the summer. Sewwwwwww...on to my latest creation.  I offered to make a party dress for a close relative of mine.  She finds it hard to buy dresses that fit her properly. I asked her to furnish me with a dress that did fit...and used that as a template. Today's fabrics are fabulous!  I wish I had the same fabrics back in the day. I chose a royal blue stretchy lace over a same colour jersey fabric.  Both had great stretching capabilities, so size/fit wasn't going to be such a rigourous problem as in days gone by.  I had enough of the lace left over to make a matching shawl and crocheted lace trim on each end of the shawl with bead accents

Below are photos of the dress and shawl...and one with the recipient happily modeling my creation! It fit her wonderfully...even though she never once tried it on during the sewing process.  I have to note here that, due to a weird dyslexia....I am unable to follow a knitting, crocheting or (most) sewing patterns. I HAVE to design it my head...and go from there.  It's like I have to overcome a disability to make these creations!

Completed Dress and Shawl

Shawl with matching pocket book accessory 

Trying on the party dress for the first time!

I am glad my infant granddaughter already shows signs of being a "girly girl".... as I call any girl who enjoys sewing and the "feminine skills"....I'm very much looking forward to passing on some of my tips and hints!

Artwork #15 January 1, 2016 - "Froggy and Oh! Oh!"

....a Children's Storybook
Written, Illustrated and Carved by Greencrow for Eva

The idea for this carving came out of a template in a Woodworking book.  I immediately wanted to carve it for my granddaughter for Christmas. But the frog had a plain dowel in its mouth....which was supposed to be run up and down its back to make a "frog-like" sound. I respectable frog would have a piece of wood in its mouth.  Then the idea came to me to put an insect into the frog's mouth.  A Dragon Fly seemed a natural choice due to the long thin dowel shape. Gradually, the entire story of "Froggy and Oh! Oh!" came to me as I was carving the piece.

Then I decided to make it into a story book so that one year old Eva could read it as she grows. Finally, we created a video out out of the story book so that other children can enjoy the story.  The Froggy sound can be replicated by running a piece of wood (pencil) over any rough surface. Enjoy!

"Froggy" Carved out of yellow cedar 4 1/2" x 1 1/2"
painted and glazed

Oh! Oh! (Dragonfly) cedar dowel  5 3/4" x 6" 
with wooden ball head screwed onto dowel.
Quilted fabric wings stuffed with cotton batting.

Close-up of Oh! Oh! with Froggy in the background

Froggy with Oh! Oh! in his mouth.

Watch the video of "Froggy and Oh! Oh!"....

Froggy and Oh! Oh! Video


Artwork #14 September 7, 2015 - Seahorse Seafood Serving Dish -

 View #1 - Seahorse Serving Dish hanging on the wall
hand carved out of butternut wood 16" x 6 1/4"

 View #2 - Seahorse Serving Dish upside down on a Seashell place mat

 View #3 - Seahorse Serving Dish - ready to be filled with seafood and dip

Finally finished my hand-carved butternut "Seahorse Serving Dish"--which matches the candlestick shown in photographs below. This was a very time-intensive project. I could still sand away till the cows came home.  The "serving side" of the work is stained with non-toxic bee's wax, while the "display/wall hanging side" has a coat of clear veneer added on top of the stain.  I have already used it a couple of times for serving fresh shrimp with sauce.  The hollowed out Seahorse snout will hold a dozen or so toothpicks! When it's not being utilized, it hangs from a nail on my kitchen wall. To complete the seashore motif, I sewed a set of six reversible "seashell" place-mats with matching reversible napkins. The next time I choose wood, I'll examine it more closely for the presence of tiny worm holes.  This piece has quite a few worm holes and, while some would say they "add to the charm"...they were difficult to work around.  As enjoyable as this carving is and as much as I learned from the project,  I believe I've worked out my obsession with seashells and seahorses and am ready to move on. 


Artwork #13 September 6, 2015 - Video of 60's artwork

A brief tour of greencrow's "Mini-Gallery" of oils and sketches - done in the 60's

Video of greencrow's "mini gallery" of 60's artwork.  This is a small representation of the artwork I did while I attended art school in the mid-60's.  It is comprised of "first and/or very early efforts".  The reason it's still together as a "gallery" is because my father had it on display in his home--until his death at 100 in 2013.  I received it back and have now put it up on my walls.  It's a "journey down memory lane" of old styles and mediums.  If I were to go back to doing oils or acrylics (nobody does oils anymore) it would be using an airbrush.  I have a complete airbrush kit given to me as a gift, lying around never used, in my studio.  As my readers know...I've been doing woodworking for the past year or so. That's my excuse for not trying airbrush...and I'm sticking to it! :)


Artwork #12 - June 12, 2015 - Wooden Seahorse Candlestick Centrepiece (Unfinished)

Wooden Seahorse Candlestick Centerpiece
11" x 4 1/2" carved Yellow Cedar

I'm so excited about this latest wood carving I'm working on, that I used it as a centrepiece for a dinner I had--even before it is finished. It's a Seahorse Candlestick carved out of yellow cedar. It has a brass candle holder that will be screwed and glued permanently into place once the candlestick has been sanded and stained. Sometimes, staining can "ruin" a piece so that's why I am enjoying this piece in its natural state. The candlestick is actually part of a very challenging set...a large bowl in three sections in the shape of a Seahorse--for serving seafood and dip (It will also double as a wall hanging/decoration)...and a napkin/utensil holder...also in the shape of a seahorse. These last two pieces are being carved out of butternut wood...which I've never worked with before.  It will take me all summer, at least, to complete my Seahorse Seafood Serving Set (Say THAT fast five times! ;).

Seahorse Candlestick Close-up

I 'll post some photos of the set when it's completed.  It will be interesting to compare whether the candlestick looks better stained and finished, or shown above.


Artwork #11 - May 14, 2015 - Two Carved "Love Spoons"

Carved "Love Spoons" in wall display. I carved the ones on the left and right over the past three months.  The big spoon in the middle is an antique carved wooden spoon picked up in an antique shop in Sweden in 1980.  Carved wooden "Love Spoons" as a tradition date back hundreds of years and were carved throughout Europe.  Legend has it that when a man wanted to marry a woman he carved a spoon to show her father that he was a good wood craftsman. The spoons take all sorts of forms and styles. Some are simple and some are extremely elaborate. I chose two spoons to carve that represented the two ethnic backgrounds in my family...Swedish and Celtic (Irish).  Enjoy!

"Celtic Dragon Love Spoon"
13" x 4"

This spoon is carved out of Bass Wood and was created from a template found in a book of Traditional "Love Spoons". The template did not call for a "jade eye" but that's my touch--as I had a jade ball left over from some jewelry and decided to liven up the piece with a stone insert.

"Traditional Swedish Love Spoon"
12" x 3 1/2"

This spoon was also carved from Bass Wood and the design taken from a template found in a book of traditional love spoons.  I chose one Swedish and one Celtic to represent the two ethnicities in our family.  Hopefully, each child will get to choose a spoon to bring to their own home some day.


Artwork #10  - May 2, 2015 - Two pieces of garden (outdoor) statuary I did way back in 1966...when I was attending Musee de Beaux Arts in Montreal.
 Picasso-style garden nymph
July, 1966 11" high by 16" long by 8" wide 

This sculpture is made out of ciporex (sp?) a kind of blown cement.  It was a block all students were given and asked to form a sculpture out of.  I decided to emulate Pablo Picasso...who was all the rage at the time.  I don't leave these sculptures in my back garden (where they were photographed) due to having three dogs.  I know they would like to pee on them as a kind of critical analysis (: 0)

 "Russian Woman"
July, 1966 13" high by 3" wide

This sculpture was made using a very elaborate process. First I sculpted it in clay..then covered it in plaster of Paris to form a mold (in two halves) and then poured cement into the mold. Then I burnished it with a special brush to make it look like iron. Even though I sculpted it back in 1966...I have always called it "Russian woman"  or "Russian peasant woman".  Who knew that I would become a Russophile and eventually visit Russia! Again, I do not keep this statue outside, due to my dogs perhaps causing damage to it.  It has already been broken once!


Artwork #9 Photos of an urban VanJuly, 1966 11" high by 16" long by 8" widecouver forest on a snowy day in December, 2014

This Great blue heron is a regular on this river and is fishing
This is where I found the toadstools (shown in the photos below) last fall

This is where I found the piece of wild cherrywood, from which I made the carving shown below.  I also found a nice Thorn Wood stick I'm currently carving a walking stick out of.  

Artwork #8 - March 3, 2015 - Wild cherrywood carving

Vänta! ("Wait!") View #1
6 1/4 " tall freestanding

This is a carving made out of a piece of wild cherrywood I found alongside a pathway near a salmon stream in the urban forest where I walk my dogs.  I found the piece of wood on a snowy day last December, 2014 (photos I took that day are shown above on this page).  I like carving out of wild wood more than "bought" (processed wood).  The wood "speaks" to me more clearly. This piece of wood spoke of an old man, virtually blind from cataracts, who hails from northern europe...perhaps Sweden.  (Vänta! is Swedish for "Wait")

Or, perhaps the man came from Siberia. The Swedes settled and populated much of Russia (which is why the Ukraine flag is yellow and blue...Swedish colours). This old man is dying, but wants to go to battle just one more time. That's why he's carrying the cudgel. He is asking his god ("Thor?") not to take him... just yet...."Wait!" It looks like he has blood on his hand... but that's just the natural colours in the wood. There are a lot of colours that came out in the wood, including his nose, which looks like he was a bit of a drinker (: )

The most interesting feature of the old man are his eyes. I made them out of tiny chips of "Aventurine". I knew exactly what colour of stone I wanted when I searched the bucket of discarded stone chips in the lapidary shop next door to our woodworking shop. I regularly peruse this bucket looking for interesting chips to add to my carvings. The person in the shop told me the name of the stone--Aventurine...and, when I looked it up...It said that Aventurine is from Siberia and the healing qualities of the stone include "vision". This was after I had already almost completed my old man.  Amazing!

Here are two more views of Vänta!

Vänta! ("Wait!") View #2

Vänta! ("Wait!") View #3
Note:  the celtic symbol carving in the background was one of my very first pieces.


Artwork #7 - December 19, 2014

Two Homemade Christmas Gifts

The first one is an Alligator I carved out of yellow cedar at the woodworking class I'm enrolled in.  It's 9" x 2".  My teacher gave me the alligator template as a challenge.  I don't even like alligators.... and wouldn't touch it... until I remembered the children's story about the "Frog and the Alligator".  The frog hitchhikes on the alligator's back across the river.  The alligator keeps encouraging the frog to move closer to his head for a "better view".  Once the frog is sitting on the alligator's nose...SNAP!  End of Frog...end of Story.   I had bought a miniature glass frog years ago and, in a fit of inspiration, I glued it onto the lid of the hollowed out stomach...a neat place to hide keepsakes!  A great gift to give a child....together with the cautionary tale (and of course some money tucked into the alligator's belly).

Alligator with Frog
The teeth are made out of toothpicks glued into the mouth and painted white


The second carving is a Gecko/cup also made out of yellow cedar.  It is 8" x 3".  I had a great time carving this one.  I bought a Dremel electric stylus to hollow out the cup...and discovered that I love to Dremel! Of course putting a little largesse and candy in the cup makes it the perfect gift!  A Merry Christmas to all my fellow artists out there!!!  Keep up the good work!

 Gecko Cup

Artwork #6 - December 1, 2014 Here is a selection of Christmas Crafts  I'm currently working on.  I am also working on some wood carving gifts..... which I will show in a later post.   In case you wonder why I'm not blogging as much : )

1.  Christmas Peace Balls -  Says "Peace on Earth - We Only Have One!"


2.  Doggie Hand Knitted Sweaters - with matching Bandanas


3Nut Babies 


4.  Cork Horses




Artwork #5 November 7, 2014 Two charcoal sketches of First Nations aborignal youth.  I sketched Severn and Jacob on August 10, 1966 while attending a summer school for the arts in Elliot Lake Ontario:


18" x 15" charcoal on paper

18" x 15" charcoal on paper

Severn and Jacob....two aboriginal youths from the
 Great Slave Lake region of Northern Canada
I sketched them in charcoal in August of 1966

Artwork #4  October 27, 2014 - Hallowe'en Art:  More seasonal art---this time Scary Hallowe'en wood carvings.

The two carvings below are recent work I've done as part of the "Fantasy" woodcarving course I'm taking.  Fantasy wood carving is quite a niche.  Artwork #1 at the very bottom of this page is also part of this series.

"Cri de Coeur"  (Cry from the Heart)  19", Cottonwood mask carving with tea lights

This wall hanging was literally my first effort in this genre and just took on a life of its own as I was carving it.  The eyes are bright yellow glass (doesn't show up too well in this photo).  And I put a red glass heart in the mouth.  I think I will only be taking this out on Hallowe' it's quite frightening...and frightful : /

"Nevermore" 21" cottonwood carving with tea lights, stained yellow cedar crow
and crow feathers

This piece was better thought out and is dedicated to Edgar Allen Poe's epic poem: "The Raven".  I used parchment paper with a tea light behind it to create the moon.  The crow feathers were collected on walks with my dogs in a nearby urban forest.  Closer detail shown below:

"Nevermore"  Detail #1

"Nevermore"  Detail #2 

PS:  Both these works show off their maximum potential with the battery T-lights on...and the room lights off!

Artwork #3  Photos of Toadstools/Mushrooms in a Pacific Northwest Urban Forest,
October, 2014

I like the idea of art photography.  I just don't have the patience or the camera equipment.  I'm always taking pictures of nature with the idea of doing acrylic paintings of the photos later on...but, again, never get around to it.  Recently, while walking my dogs along the banks of a salmon stream in a local urban forest, I came across a small field of large toadstools.  I noticed them because a mother and a young girl about 5 years old were standing looking at them.  I began to talk with the pair about the find.  It seems the little girl's name was "Alice".  I remarked that another "Alice" (in Wonderland) had a run-in with a caterpillar...who was sitting on a toadstool, smoking a hookah.  The mother laughed, remembering Disney's unforgettable scene.
Disney's Alice and the Caterpillar

  Then the mother and I both said in unison:  "And the caterpillar said to Alice,  'Whoooooo Are You!????"

Toadstools #1 October, 2014

Toadstools #2 October, 2014

Toadstools #3, October, 2014
Toadstools #4 October 2014
Toadstools #5 October 2014

Artwork #2 Children's Artwork circa August, 2000

This is some artwork that a family member recently found in a drawer where it has lain since 2000.  I had a look at it and remembered that I did it with my children on a rainy day when there was nothing else to do.  The project was showing them different mediums you could use with art.  Having looked at the artwork with "new eyes"  ...the pieces stand the test of time.  So I framed them with some cheap frames that were on sale at Michael's.  Our dear departed Flicka has been hung in our kitchen...above where she regularly sat in her long lifetime (14 years).  I'll be giving the two other artworks to a couple expecting their first child.

"Flicka the Family Cat"  August, 2000, 12" x 15", Mixed media (oil pastels, coloured pencils, pen, watercolours, crayons)

"Ladybug"  August, 2000, Potato Art 10" x 8". (create a stamp design on half of a raw potato and then work around it with pen and watercolours)

"Doves" August, 2000, 10" x 8",   This artwork was created by cutting out two doves from cardboard, sticking them on the white background.  Then paint the background with watercolours.  When dry, remove the doves and you will see their images in white.


Artwork #1 Wood Carving August 20, 2014

August 26, 2014 - Here is my first artistic offering for this page.  I had to learn how to upload from "Picasa" not an easy are three views of a recently completed "fantasy" wood carving.  I carved it out of two random pieces of raw cottonwood that had been gathered from the BC forest.  I carved the pieces to be hollow and fit together.  I carved holes in the wood and then glued glass pieces into the holes.  Then I strategically placed battery operated tea the artwork could be lit up from the inside.  Then I gave it away to a friend.  He will be happy to see his gift on the Internet:

"Tearful Totem", 12" high freestanding,
August 20, 2014 
raw cottonwood carving with glass and tea lights



Unknown said...

Keep up the good work!

RickB said...

Great stuff! Wish you the best with your dreams. Maybe one day I'll be selling photography of Spain.

greencrow said...

Thank you RickB. Art is all around us and is one of the spices that makes some of the negative things that take place on this planet palatable.