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Chain saw carver makes art from Columbia Springs stumps

September 19, 2019

first_imgHe looks like a Halloween-season hazard as he stalks the forest with a chain saw, but George Kenny knows there’s nothing to worry about. He’s only there to add to the natural beauty.Escorted around the Heron Loop trail at Columbia Springs Environmental Education Center by Executive Director Maureen Montague and Events Coordinator Kayla Dansereau, Kenny pauses to consider dead tree stumps and fallen logs that could become palettes for his art. One maple stump is big and broad, but soft and disintegrating; Kenny guesses it’ll be gone within a few years.But a big, hard cedar trunk beside the trail is perfect for a heron — and Kenny has a convenient model too, a few yards away: one stationary bird who hangs out at the edge of the pond like whole the place belongs to him, Montague said.Kenny revs up his saw and sets to work on a heron in profile. Sawdust flies, but only for about three minutes, and then it’s there at eye level: a graceful long-necked bird.After decades of doing this, he rarely needs any model, Kenny said — unless there’s something tricky about the creature he’s creating. Maybe it’s turning or twisting in a way that could use a little examination; maybe the fur or feathers or scales need some natural irregularity. Kenny doesn’t want his woodland creatures to look like they just visited the hairdresser, he joked.last_img

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