Mohawk Valley Art & Woodcarving Association

August 1999 Newsletter 

Well, this time 'yours truly' made it to the meeting.  We still got a copy of the minutes from Martha Colinas here, so let's mix some fine detail from Martha with some probably less-than-reliable observations of my own, and see what kind of newsletter spews forth.  We had a new member join us during this meeting.  Welcome to Eddie Provost who happens to be Director of the Innman Center.  He gave himself a fine introduction with an accent that might be just a 'tad' south of Pennsylvania.  Eddie, make sure you get a copy of tips for Southerners transplanted to the North.  It starts off with "There are only three spices here in the North; salt, pepper, and ketchup", and includes several useless tips for dealing with snow.  When explaining what made him decide to join our group and try woodcarving, he said it occurred to him one day while watching Ron Meyers carve.  If Ron could carve like that, Eddie figured anyone could probably do it.  Martha adds here, "...and so begins Eddie's carving career."  It should be noted that Ron showed up a bit late for the meeting, so he missed this part.  We believe he was brought up to speed on all this during break though.

Walt LeClair, show co-chair, reports that the Christian Brothers Academy (CBA) is reserved for May 6&7, 2000.  Martha has Christian Boys Academy here, but I think that's due to some 'hack' in the previous newsletter calling it the Catholic Boys Academy.  Some writers just can't handle acronyms.  A search for a new banquet site is under way.

Speaking of amateur hacks and newsletters... Mike Bloomquist has signed on to continue writing this newsletter.  Anyone wishing to do a 'guest shot' is more than welcome to jump in here for a month (or more).  Until that happens or Kai takes the heal back, you'll be forced to suffer with him indefinitely... bwah ha ha !*
(* Cheap horror flick type laugh)

In another electrifying performance by our treasurer, Marcus Kruger, our treasury balance was reported at $5913.86.  Where does that guy come up with these numbers!

Carol Ayers is reporting difficulty in getting shirts. The new company has problems getting the same shirts as the previous supplier.  Despite problems, they've been able to add a couple items to the list now available.  Crew-neck sweatshirts are now available at $16.50 each and hooded sweatshirts are $22.00.  We're going to be the best dressed woodcarvin' club in the country pretty soon.  BTW, Carol and I met again at SUNY Oswego where we were dumping... errr... setting our offspring up for the next step in their educations.  I don't know about you Carol, but after that Friday it's a good thing my wood supply is well stocked.  Think we should consider carving used Popsicle sticks!?

It was suggested at this meeting that the Innman Center be used permanently as our meeting site.  Eddie Prevost explained that the membership fees from the... ummm... elder members of the Thursday group would cover any concerns over a usage fee.  Ron Meyers motioned to move the meetings there permanently, it was seconded.  There were an overwhelming number of 'ayes', but due to technical difficulties the usual 'nay' was handled by an apprentice naysayer (who will also remain nameless... Yes, the nameless naysayer... hmmmm).  Anyway, it's comforting to know some traditions carry on no matter what! 

Dick Moran reminded all of the video library rental system.  At present there are 32 titles.  They are loaned out for a month for a $10 deposit.  The $10 is refundable on return, forfeit if it's late.  A new title, 'Sugar Pine Woodfellows', is available.  It was a gift from Peter Paces to Carl Borst, and Carl donated it to the library.  Thanks Carl.

Twenty-three folks attended our 2nd annual picnic at the Kiwanis Park.  The weather was great, the food was great, and a fun time was had by all.

Carol Ayers started a discussion about our policy towards vendors at the annual show.  Folks, the times, they are a changin'.  Past practices were discussed, current practices were discussed, breaches of those practices were discussed, possible future practices were discussed (due to our new location and additional space).... it went on for a while.  The discussion wrapped up finally with all agreeing it needed more consideration and discussion, and Mike Bloomquist volunteering to take a little straw pole out on The Web and get back to you all (don't you just get tired of these web headed, byte happy, computer geeks?).  Bye the way, someone should relieve Carol of her knife before she stands up to speak next time.  There's gotta be some Italian in her background.  All those hand gestures gripping a carving knife make it hard to concentrate on what she's saying. Sr. Mary Ellen was sitting next to her, and it may have been the distance, but I'm sure her eyes were squeezed shut and she was praying!  At the very least it's tough to challenge Carol's point... if you know what I mean.

Andy Ebli was off to Austria with Sr. Mary Ellen soon to follow.  We wish them a safe trip, good carving, and a speedy return to us.

Carl Borst, Pieter Paulding, and John Raucci agreed to serve on committee for the November 13th club show at the Inman Center. The Innman Center will have the kitchen open, and together with Sr. Mary Ellen will publicize the event.  Sr. Mary Ellen and publicity... Heck, we'll be seeing attendees from California!  No chairman was named.  Man, this sounds like a fun little show-off-your-stuff, just-talk-carvin', let's-eat-and-have-fun sort of get together.  Be there, or be square!

Dick Moran suggested a guest carver for the club show in May, possibly combined with a workshop prior to the show.  He took a straw vote of his own, naming various possible carving personalities/instructors.  We should get the results at the next meeting.

For the program half of the meeting, Carl Borst and his silent partner, mmmonphhh..mmaummmuphi, demonstrated several techniques for carving eyes. There should be graphics here, but they may have to wait for the next newsletter.  A couple of good tips: 

  • Where realistic eyes are placed vertically half way between the chin and the top of the head, in caricatures, they are placed higher leaving more room for the exaggerated features below them.
  • The eyes don't face exactly forward, but are tilted slightly outward for peripheral vision.
  • The iris & pupil is usually partially covered by the top lid, the bottom lid, or both depending on the expression.
  • It's a good idea to place the iris/pupil to look in some direction other than straight ahead.  This adds interest to your carving.
  • Ron Meyers knows 36 different ways to carve eyes... according to him, they're ALL wrong.

Some late breaking news here:

The Onondaga Woodcarvers are having their annual show at Beaver Lake Nature Center Oct 16 & 17.  More details to follow.

Dues are due at our September meeting.  That's THIS year's September meeting.  Remember George's quote, "That Cheap?!.... Hey, sign me up!"

Election of officers is also this month.  The current slate is; President - Carl Borst, Vice President - Joe Rusik, Secretary  -  Martha Colinas, and Treasurer  -  Marcus Kruger.  The Treasurer and Secretary would like to encourage folks to step up and serve at they're positions this year.  They will serve for one more year, if it comes to that, but would like to step down (Marcus, tell me it isn't true!).

Well folks, that's all for this month... see ya at the meeting.