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Wood Carving Training Programs and Courses

Wood carvers make functional objects, as well as decorative works of art from pieces of wood. Wood carving training programs and courses are offered through private wood carving schools and technical and community colleges.

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Wood Carving Programs

It often takes years of training to become skilled at wood carving. Programs at private wood carving schools can range from a few days to many weeks, while college wood carving courses often require a semester or more of training. Aspiring wood carvers should have good hand-eye coordination. They also should be patient and detail-oriented.

Formal Education

Wood carving training classes are typically taught by master artisans. Students learn to create artistic or usable wooden pieces through common wood carving processes, such as whittling and chip and relief carving.

Basic Training

Individuals enrolled in a basic wood carving program learn about popular types of wood and basic wood carving terminology. They also gain hands-on training in the following:

  • Woodworking safety
  • Types of wood carving tools
  • Using wood carving tools
  • Carving lettering and decorative designs
  • Types of wood finishes

Intermediate Training

More advanced wood carving courses might center on the creation of one particular object, such as a figurine, guitar or chair. Topics of study might include:

  • Carving principles
  • Wood carving skill development
  • Time efficient wood carving strategies
  • Design and development process
  • Tool sharpening techniques

Job Experience

Wood carving training is beneficial for individuals seeking careers in woodworking, as well as those who want to pursue wood carving as a hobby. Those interested in woodworking careers can gain practical experience by serving as apprentices to master wood carvers. Such experience would be particularly beneficial to aspiring wood carving artists, wooden boat detailers, fine furniture designers and custom wood cabinet makers.

Workshops and Seminars

Colleges, wood carving schools and community organizations often sponsor wood carving workshops and seminars, which generally range from 1-5 days. Additionally, wood carving clubs frequently host local wood carving shows, which usually last for several days and allow artists to market their pieces and participate in competitions and workshops.

Professional Development

Wood carvers seeking continuing education can look to relevant Internet sites, which often provide instructional wood carving videos, articles, carving tips, design patterns and tool reviews. Visitors can also subscribe to virtual newsletters or participate in discussion forums. Resource-rich books and online and print magazines, such as Woodcarving Illustrated (www.woodcarvingillustrated.com), are also available.

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