Oooh, Shiny! (turning a chicken into a bike)
Going back to college, getting married, having a kid, going through the licensing process to become a Professional Land Surveyor and taking over a business, all contributed to my almost 9 year absence from carving. On paper it sounds like more than enough to excuse the vacation from wood chips but if I'm being honest that just isn't the case.
You see, many years ago, my wife diagnosed me with "Oooh, Shiny! syndrome". At first I denounced this diagnoses but the evidence against me is far too great. What does this mean? Well, I have a tendency to find a new interest and instead of casually checking it out, I dive in, as in 110 percent all consuming, dive in. "Oooh, Shiny! has had many faces over the years but the incarnation that overlaps my leave from carving is cycling.
I could ramble on about this "passion" but lets just say I took it pretty seriously.
Since my return to carving I have had many requests for commissions, some of which I have accepted. I try to avoid commissions because I have so many of my own ideas that I will never get to. In September of 2016, I got a request for a carved chicken. A chicken? Yes, a chicken. My immediate thought was, "No way am I wasting a bunch of carving time on a chicken!" Then it clicked! The request was from the owner of a bike shop (we had met through group rides and races). You can never have too many bikes and a fat bike was something that was missing from my stable. Once the idea of trading towards a new bike entered my head the gears started whirling. The challenge was taking a seemingly dull subject and turning it into an interesting carving. In the end this turned out to be one of my favorite carvings to date and bombing down a trail on a fat bike is an added bonus.