Give a Heart for the Holidays

November 24, 2019

We recently started carving these Hearts for smaller items. It was a great way to use up some exotic and unusual woods left over from other projects. Some have slight wave patterns in them, but no two are alike. The front heart pops out from the backer heart, giving it a 3D effect. These would make great holiday gifts and we are offering them for $225.00 each with free shipping. We only have these few left, but we can create more out of some of the woods we have on hand like; Purple Heart, Juniper and more.

 

Black Limba with copper patina   18H x7Wx3D

Box Elder Burl and Mesquite                  15 1/2Hx7Wx4D

Box Elder burl w/turquoise and walnut 10 1/2Hx8 1/2Wx4D

Bubinga and pinyon pine              15 1/2Hx6Wx4D

Mahogany and walnut         13 1/2Hx7Wx4D

Tulip Wood with Mesquite Butcher Block 16Hx7Wx3D

Zebra wood with Walnut 17Hx6Wx4D

Also on sale for the holidays are our Resin Sculptures and Carved Bowls.

The Resin Sculptures incorporate wood with dyed resin. Some of the them are see thru like this one below while others have multi colors swirled around the wood. Here are two examples of them. To see more, contact us. These are also free shipping.

BIG RED-Box Elder Burl with dyed red resin $650.00 20Tx16diameter

SILVER and GOLD-Brasiletta wood with pearl silver, gold and blue dyed resin $550.00 17Tx14diameter

And of course we have some carved bowls. These two are out of Mesquite wood with turquoise inlay. They are $395.00 with free shipping.

Wavy Mesquite bowl  8Hx14 1/2Lx10W

Two Waves bowl 7 1/2Tx15Lx10 1/2W

Heirloom Rocker

November 17, 2019

Black Limba and Wenge Rocker

Front view of the rocker

After our recent trip to Tanzania, we created this rocking chair for my dad, as a thank you from those of us that went on the trip. Scott and I decided to make it out of African woods, Black Limba and Wenge. This gorgeous rocker was a labor of love and and one of our all time favorites. The grain in the Black Limba was so beautiful and flowed so nicely, while the Wenge made the rocker grain really pop.

Here are a few photos taken during the construction process. A neighbor friend attended the process to see what all was entailed.

Seat and arms being prepped

Gluing up a runner

One runner glued up and ready to router and shape

First glue up before arms are attached

Getting arms ready to fit

Test fitting an arm

Shaping the rocker

A thank you message carved into the bottom of the seat

Close up of the incredible grain in the seat and arms.

A perfect layout of the grain in the headrest. Look how the Wenge back spindles make the darker wood of the Black Limba pop.

Wenge was inlaid into the glue up of the runners.

Wenge was also used for the plugs

A beautiful fireplace setting made for great pictures

Our Africa Adventure

July 19, 2019

We recently traveled to Tanzania with some of my family (11 of us total). It was an absolutely amazing trip and we’ll always remember it. We got to have quality time with family and see some incredible animals and scenery. Tanzania is just gorgeous and was much greener than expected and the people were the friendliest we had ever encountered.  Since we went during their winter, the weather was very nice and actually cool at night.

Women carrying baskets on their heads in very colorful clothes.

We started our trip with over 20 hours of flying, where we met up with most of the family in Amsterdam about half way through. It was heartwarming seeing everyone. Some of us hadn’t seen each other in quite some time.

 

Our last morning we took a photo of all of us, our guides and some of the camp workers.

We stayed at several locations throughout our stay, but our favorite was our first camp, where we saw an Elephant and a Cape Buffalo and heard many other animals. These were permanent tent structures with nice little porches and ample room inside with a full working bathroom. That night everyone sat by a fire, had a few beers, talked and laughed.

The first two days we spent in Tarangire National park and Lake Manyara National Park. The animals were incredible and everywhere we turned there was something to see.

Upside down tree with elephant. Of course we’d be drawn to the unique trees.

Our first Elephant sighting was very exciting. Little did we know that we’d be seeing quite a few on our entire trip. They were my favorite.

Zebra cooling off. We also saw a lot of them on the trip.

Giraffe watching us watching him. These graceful and curious creatures were fun to watch.

Newborn Empala. We were lucky to come upon this just minutes after it was born.

We saw lots of monkeys our first few days.

A very large Baboon Troupe of around 100.

Leopard cub looking for its momma.

We moved on to the Ngorongoro Crater, which was one of my favorite days. The wildlife was so abundant down in the crater and we also saw our first lions.

Cape Bufallo

Some family in the other jeep. Roofs raise up for easy viewing.

Our first lion sighting was two young males lounging.

View from the top of the Crater of a large salt lake. It was actually cold and foggy up there at the top.

View down in the bottom of the crater. The crater had grass lands and jungle to explore.

A cute Jackel seemed to pose for the camera

One of the best hippo sightings was this big guy out of the water. But we saw 100’s of them in the water.

Warthog family. So ugly they’re cute.

We then moved on to the Serengeti. On the way we stopped by a Maasai village to see how they lived and buy some of their handmade trinkets. It was amazing how welcoming they were and to see how they lived.

Large family performing for us

Inside of a school for the youngsters.

Balloons over the Serengeti

Our next lion sighting on the way to our camp was these two females in a tree.

Not to far after those two females was a large pride laying on the rocks and then another in the grass.

Our first camp site on the Serengeti. This was more like Glamping with a full bathroom. But it was a bucket shower where someone stands outside your tent while you shower and they fill a tank till you’re done. It was quite interesting. These camps have a good working staff and a chef with some wonderful food.

While on the Serengeti, we saw quite a few of the same animals. But there was one in particular that we were all wanting to see. That was the illusive Rhino. We had been lucky enough to see all the Big Five, Elephant, Leopard (cub), Cape Buffalo and Lion, but the Rhino was the only one we hadn’t. It wasn’t easy, but with some help from other guides we finally saw him or her.

Rhino in distance

We may not have seen the very large migration that you see on tv, due to them being later than normal because of all the green grass. But we did see some of it. Off in the distance there they were. At first it looked like a bunch of shrubs, but upon closer inspection with binoculars you could see them. It was amazing. We were also lucky enough to have some cross right in front of us and run down the road. That went on for about a mile with us trailing behind.

Large Wildabeast Migration

African traffic jam with Wildabeast

Our last morning before flying out was packed with driving to the Tanzania and Kenya border where we took a lot of family photos.

My sister and I reinacting playing monkey when we were kids and my brother being goofy in the background.

Our two guides Arron and Clemence posing. They were absolutely awesome and a lot of fun.

After this, on our way back to the airstrip, we were lucky enough to see our final lion pride (3 males and two females). We sat watching them nap and then slowly rise. However, just before leaving, something made a noise (possibly zebra fighting) off in the distance and they all got up and started walking towards the sound. Amazing how they all seem to come to attention at the same time.

Love this shot of her looking at us through the grass

One of the large males following her

We took our first bush plane out of the serengeti to the Killimanjaro airport. I was excited about it. Scott not so much. But we made it and can say we did it.

Now that our adventure of a lifetime is over, we’ve arrived safely home, gotten over the jetlag and spent time with our puppies, it’s time to get back to work. The trip inspired Scott to make some unusual creations like this one he’s working on.

It’s carved from a long narrow Claro Walnut log, which is already revealing some gorgeous grain. He carved out the flower shapes that curve around the log and will continue them all the way to the bottom. He will then add hash marks to the inner part of the log and Ebonize it, leaving the flower opening for me to sand. It will then stand on a stone base, making it around 4ft tall. For a little whimsy we’ll be adding some gold leaf balls that can fit in some of the flower shapes. I can’t wait till it’s done and can get photos of it posted on Instagram and Facebook. So be sure to check back in a couple of weeks.

Also in the works is the last of the very large Eucalyptus logs that we got in Phoenix. As you can see it’s still in progress, but you can see that it has very large waves and folds started on the inside. Next he’ll move to the outside, continuing the design by following the waves and folds. The last one he made was very popular and sold pretty quickly, but was a little smaller than this one. This one will be approximately 3ft diameter. These pieces along with many others will be at our upcoming shows in August, Crested Butte Arts Festival in CO and Sculpture in the Park in Loveland CO. To see our full schedule visit our website. http://www.shangrilawoodworks.com

 

 

Like Riding A Bike

June 28, 2019

Since making the move to creating all Sculpture, it’s been over 2 years since we made any furniture and about 3 years since we made a rocker. But when a previous customer had his home burn down in the big Paradise CA fire last year, thus loosing his rocker, he asked us to make a replacement. We couldn’t say no. Since it’s been a while making any furniture, we were a little slow on the start. But like the old saying goes, “It’s like riding a bicycle”. Some things you never forget. We may have had to refer back to old notes, remind ourselves of certain things and use reading glasses for some of the work (sucks getting old), it all came out beautiful and full filing in the end. When we decided to do the rocker, we also decided to make one for ourselves. I know, can you believe we actually don’t have one of our own rockers. But after we finish it up this winter, we will finally have our own.

Both rockers are made out of the same wood, but different styles. Our clients rocker is the Maloof style we used to do and ours will be the Shangrila II rocker. The wood is Curly Cherry and Tiger Maple. A beautiful combo with lots of figure. And once the cherry ages it will turn darker and be gorgeous. Since I documented the progress for our client, you can see all the stages that go into creating an incredibly hand made rocking chair.

These two pics show the start of creating a rocker. The first one is all the runner slices and stackers cut into thin pieces to be able to bend them into a form, as shown in the second pic.

rough sanding seat and legs

Next Scott has created the seat and all the legs. They are routered and joints cut. He then carves the seat and I rough sand all those parts.

The seat and legs are glued up and he moves on to creating the arms, headrest and spindles. The headrest starts out as a normal board. He cuts it and then flips that cut to achieve the curve in the headrest and it gets glued up. The back spindles are all cut out and ready to shape and sand.

The stackers are glued onto the runners where they will get shaped into the legs once they are attached. The headrest, arms and spindles are all test fit before sanding those parts.

Here the spindles are being test fit again before they are sanded and Scott starts the shaping of the legs into the seat.

The arms are applied and shaped in and then the sanding of the upper part of the rocker is done before adding in the spindles. It’s much easier to do this few step sanding process then to do it when the whole thing is together.

The final process involves attaching the runners. First they are test fit to see where they will sit. Then they are shaped and sanded before attaching them. Once attached and allowed to set for a day, they are then shaped into the legs.

The final sanding is done, taking it to 1500 grit by hand and sanding in between each coat of finish. Several coats of hand rubbed finish is applied and it is all done and ready for the customer.

So just like “Riding a Bike”, we were able to go a few years without making a rocker and pick it right back up to create this beauty for our customer. We hope this one is around much much longer for him.

RIPPLES IN TIME

January 17, 2019

“RIPPLES IN TIME”



Carved from a very large Eucalyptus log to create this beautiful wavy bowl. Scott first used the chainsaw to rough out the waves and folds. Then he used several different grinders to finish up the design and smooth it out. He wanted to show the age of the tree by carving into the ends of the log, showing all the growth rings. He was also careful to incorporate a branch that was protruding out of the log to add to the overall uniqueness of the sculpture.





Eucalyptus is a very hard wood and takes more time to carve and sand. From start to finish this piece took about two weeks to complete. When the finish is finally applied it shows the incredible beauty of both the wood and Scott’s carving ability to bring that beauty out.

“RIPPLES IN TIME” and many other carved vessels and sculptures will be on exhibit this weekend, January 18-20 at the Carefree Fine Art and Wine Festival in Carefree AZ. If you’re in the area, stop by and see Scott and our booth and possibly take one home with you.

Amazing New Carvings

July 11, 2018

We have been busy creating new carved sculptures for our upcoming summer shows. This weekend is Art on the Rockies in Edwards (Vail) Co. Scott has really outdone himself with these new pieces. Here are just a few of those.

“STITCH OF GOLD” was carved from a Eucalyptus log and features gold jewelers wire in a crisscross pattern, stitched through the piece in a few places.

“GONDOLA” was also carved from a Eucalyptus log into this boat shaped vessel with turquoise inlay.

“STRIKE 3” is three tunnels carved into a Mesquite log with the outside textured.

“SUNRISE CANYON” is a Eucalyptus canyon shaped vessel that has slight waves carved into it and turquoise inlay.

“COSMOS” is a tunnel design carved out of Eucalyptus with Red Opal inlay, gold leafing and texturing.

“FLOURISHING” is an incredible sculpture. The wood is Alligator Juniper Burl that is approximately 700 years old. The design resembles a large flower with two small buds. It has waves and folds carved into it, along with Chrysocolla inlay. The base is black granite with carved peach alabaster.

Inside look at “FLOURISHING”

“OLD SOUL” is one of those sculptures that only comes around once. It was carved from an approximately 900 year old Alligator Juniper. The size of the burl is a rare find. Several tunnels were carved into it that join in the middle. It features waves and folds at the openings and much of the natural aspects of the burl were left in place adding to the beauty.

Carving a Masterpiece

June 30, 2018

Creating a Masterpiece such as this can be a challenge. However, some pieces turn out so beautifully you forget about all the challenges that occur during the creation process. This sculpture started out as a very large Box Elder Burl from the Ruidoso area. We dragged several of these beasts with us when we moved here to Candy Kitchen back in 2009. At the time we asked ourselves why are we lugging these all that way and what are we going to do with them. Well they sat and sat for years out in our wood pile area, till finally one day Scott decided to tackle one. It was no small feat and during the whole process we asked ourselves why we were even working with this wood. It’s very hard, has tons and tons of holes, cracks, voids and narly pointy things and the beautiful white doesn’t stay that way once the finish was applied. But as we continued to work with it and found a finish that makes the burl and grain really pop out better, we began to appreciate it more. Of course that was after it was all finished and we saw the final product that the appreciation happened. Our customers that add one of these to their art collection really appreciate them and everyone raves about how beautiful they are. They are definitely big attractions at the shows. So now that we are down to are last remaining burls of this, we are going to really miss it and wishing we could get more. Below are photos of the process of one of the biggest sculptures we have carved out of this Box Elder Burl. We hope you enjoy seeing it morph into the Masterpiece that it truly is and perhaps even want to add it to your art collection.


The start of the carving with the chainsaw

Now it’s up to the grinders to do their hard work. Or should I say Scott do the hard work.

Lastly it’s my turn to take over the sanding and finishing. Talk about going through sand paper. Between how hard it is and how all the holes and voids tear up the sand paper it takes quite some time.

And now for the grand finale. Introducing “KINGS CROWN”.
Look at this beauty all finished up.


Close up of the grain showing how incredible it is.

 

 

If you appreciate seeing the carving process of this piece, watch our video where we take “Fantasy Flight” through the whole process.  Click on YouTube link below

Summer Happenings

July 30, 2017
It’s been a busy summer here, between getting ready for shows and planning for our fall schedule. We’ve been busy creating a lot of new and exciting sculptures, like this most recent one.

“New Inspiration” was carved from a long narrow Desert Ironwood log
Projects at the home front won’t pick back up till after our shows end. So that means this fall we’ll switch our work hats over to finishing up some unfinished projects and starting some new ones. But for now we’ll be working hard on new pieces for our last four shows and to replenish some of the galleries that carry our work. Below are just a few of the new pieces we have created.

“Bow Tie”-carved from an Alligator Juniper log into this two tunnel sculpture. Ebony bow ties were inlaid over some cracks to add a different element.


“Beauty Within” was carved from a Mesquite log. Scott carved waves, folds and bends into the piece, along with some small round cup shapes. All the natural worm holes and cracks were left natural, showing off the beauty in this wood.

“Enchantment” was appropriately named after our home state. It was carved from a large Alligator Juniper Burl into this incredible sculpture. The open vase shape has waves and bends showing off the incredible grain. Turquoise was inlaid into some of the natural cracks.
These are just a few of the new pieces we have to show off at our upcoming shows. To see our show schedule, please visit our website, http://www.shangrilawoodworks.com
It hasn’t all been work for us this summer. We had a little fun when my dad came to visit and we hiked up to the top of El Morro National Monument. We have lived here for 8 years and that was the first time we hiked it. About time. It was quite a hike, but we had a lot of fun. And what a gorgeous view from the top. If you ever visit our area, it is a must see. We plan to hike it more often, not only for the exercise but the view.

me and dad at El Morro

Me and my dad. He is 70 years young and out did the teenagers that were hiking the same time as us. Left us in the dust a few times as well.

half way up view of wall face

Walking back down the front side looking at a large crack in the rock face

View from top of El Morro

View from the top of El Morro. Incredible 360 degree view from up top. You can see for miles.

Winter Happenings

February 16, 2017

This winter has brought several changes for us. One being that after five years, we decided to take a much needed break from doing the 10 week show in AZ (AZ Fine Art Expo) and will be doing three high end art shows instead. First up is the La Quinta Art Festival March 2-5. This prestigious show takes place in the Palm Springs area and features 220 top artists. The next show is back out in the Palm Springs area, with the Indian Wells Art Show March 31-April 2. Then the weekend after that is another very high end show, Woodlands Art Festival, taking place just North of Houston at the Woodlands Park Waterway, April 7-9. We are looking forward to these three shows and what they will bring.

These are a few pieces that are in the works to take to these shows.
new-unfinished-pieces

All of the logs used to create these vessels came from a storm that washed them and many other logs and debry onto a beach at Cayucos CA. These woods are Redwood and CA Cypress. Here are pictures of some of those logs.
cypress-log

redwood-log

Who knows how long these logs tumbled around in the ocean, before ending up on the beach. Now they will start their new and final life as a beautiful sculpture. We just wish we would have collected more logs.

Here is one of the Redwood pieces all done. It was carved into this vase shape and stands on a cherry burl base.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

This vase shows a new technique that we just started doing, where we send electricity through the piece leaving behind a very unique pattern. This process is tricky and a little dangerous, but the end result is very cool.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

We also applied that technique to a gourd, which I then dyed a shimmer green and topped with a green crystal.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

The other new and exciting thing that has happened this winter is the new addition to our family. After losing our “Apollo” last March, we felt his brother “Perseus” needed some company. So we adopted a female Great Dane from “White Kisses Great Dane Rescue” based out of Lubbock TX. Her name is “Noelle” and she is a very sweet little girl (I say little because she is smaller than our Perseus by 25lbs) and is already a big part of our family. Here are a couple of pictures of her. How someone could give this sweet girl up, is a mystery to us. But we are all the luckier to have her.

Our little girl has the cutest pigtails.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

Here she is with Scott and Perseus peering over the wall at our hotel on the beach in Cayucos CA

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

It’s already started out being another busy year, getting ready for shows and making custom orders for customers.
This desk and chair was one such custom order for a previous customer. They are made from black walnut and mesquite. The desk is a trestle style and the chair is a low back with wrapped joints. They turned out just beautiful and look fantastic in their gorgeous home. Our trip to deliver these is what took us to the beach in Cayucos CA. It was nice to mix a little business with some much needed vacation time.

desk-and-chair

chair

In my next post I will show off more of the new pieces we are currently working on for our upcoming shows and the funny antics of our two danes. But for now here is a new gourd we just completed. It has all types of piercing and dimpling done to it, in a very unique pattern, along with variegated gold leafing and a yellow crystal. This is one of our new favorites.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

10 Week Adventure coming to an end

March 26, 2016

It’s almost that time. The end to a 10 week long show in sunny Scottsdale Arizona. The Arizona Fine Art Expo ends next sunday April 3rd. Soon all the artists will be tearing down their booths, packing up and heading in all different directions, to their homes. That means long goodbyes to old and new friends, till next year, when we do this adventure all over again.

During this years show, Scott was able to create some new and very interesting sculptures. Being with a wide variety of fantastic artists over a 10 week period, allows for some fun collaborations and new ideas. What we take away from being at this show, can’t be found no other place else. Scott and I have lots of plans for some new designs, new techniques and new embellishments with the sculptures. We look forward to seeing how it all works out. Although we’ll miss the friends we have made over the years while going to AZ, we’ll be glad to stay put at home for a while and create for the upcoming summer shows.

Here are just a few of the most recent pieces that have been completed at the show. Scott has really been a busy beaver.

First two photos taken by Ron Kirk

Dazzel zap

“Dazzle” is a popular design that has a wavy vase shape. It was carved from Mesquite and has turquoise inlay.

two tunnels zap

“Two Tunnels” is a tunnel sculpture carved from Alligator Juniper with turquoise inlay. This photo captures a side view looking through the tunnel to the other side.

Below Photos were taken by Rose Photography

3 Ways Thru

“Three Ways Through” was carved from Pink Alabaster stone into the three tunnels. It has Padauk wood attached to the outer rims and used for the base. The stone is fast becoming one of our favorites to carve. Just look at the outcome.

mesquite boat vessel

“Journey” is a new design we just started creating. It is made from a mesquite log, into this boat shape, with the bark carefully left in place, and has turquoise inlayed. It seems to be hovering on this stone base, making it a great table center piece.

Mini Entangled

“Mini Entangled” is a smaller version of a 6ft sculpture we made 2 years ago, standing at approximately 32″ tall. This one is much easier to bring around. It is carved from mesquite into this spiral shape with a few small tunnels. The bark was carefully left in place, which was no easy task on this one. This sculpture has a lot of motion to it.

See Thru

“See Thru” has been a popular canyon design with the hole going through it. This is the first one that has been carved from Ironwood. This piece is very dark and with the hole in the middle, is very striking.

Stars in your eye

“Stars in your Eyes” is a dainty vase shaped vessel carved from Ironwood. The large cracks allowed for Opal to be inlayed, along with multi stones such as turquoise, coral, malachite, lapis, sugalite, melon and canary. Some of them lay in a bed of Variegated Gold Leaf to make them pop. I love the contrast of the brown to the black in this wood and the multi colored stones really make it sparkle.