Santa Wood Carvings

Susan Mattix

Hand Carved Wood Carvings


Susan Mattix Wood Carvings
by Susan Mattix

I started carving in 1992. My mother has been a woodcarver for many years and always encouraged me to try it but I was always too busy with another hobby. In my early 40s, I finally did and was immediately hooked.

The first year I took carving classes, my teacher decided a Santa figure would be appropriate for the season. He passed out blanks (pieces of wood cut out to the outline of the piece, usually basswood) to the students. He placed a finished piece at the front of the class for us to look at while we worked. I had been a collector of Father Christmas pieces for years but suddenly, I realized I could create them instead of collect them!

My first figure was crude but we all have to start somewhere.

After the first one, all I could think about was carving more of them in every size, shape and color I could imagine. My teachers included Bob Jahrling and Frank Russell.

Although I use some patterns and styles over and over, no two carvings are identical. Small changes in facial expressions and new ideas for details that the last piece didn't have always make each piece an original.

My husband, Mike, and I live quietly on Florida's Gulf Coast with our boxer, Butchie. When not carving, I work part-time for a law firm.