Thank you Hans for asking me to join your blog. My name is Doug Oliver and like Hans, I'm a semi-professional woodcarver and consider myself an artist. I also have owned my own graphic design business (http://www.fossildesign.com/) since 1996. I first studied classical woodcarving under German master carver Ludwig Kieninger from 1997-2006. Since Ludwig's retirement in 2006, I've been carving with Hans and several other carvers every Wednesday evening in East Dallas. Hans does a wonderful job of teaching us. He has his work cut out with me keeping my tools sharp! :)
My website is http://www.texaswoodcarver.com/ and I try to update that site often. From this site you should be able to get a good feel of the type of things I like to carve. I love the classical! I enjoy the Baroque, Rococo, Renaissance and Gothic periods...you could say I like "OLD WORLD". A recent project was completed at the end of August. Along with Travis Bryant (a furniture builder, carver and friend), he built and I carved two mahogany tables for a Catholic Church in Farmers Branch and delivered in 29 days. (yikes) http://www.texaswoodcarver.com/latest.html
I also have a research project I've been working on for several years now. I have been researching a famous Swiss wood carver (Peter Mansbendel) who lived in Austin, Texas from 1911 until his death in 1940. For the last 5 years I have visited multiple Texas cities, homes, businesses and documented his great work and I'm still amazed at the great output any one artist could accomplish in his lifetime. I've built a website (http://www.petermansbendel.com/) to document his life and work and plan to write a book on his life....I will try to blog when I update my sites.
A couple of recent finds of Mansbendel's fine work include the Reed Home in Austin that is being completely restored by Texas Humanties (National Endowment of the Arts) http://www.humanitiestexas.org/ and the wonderful home in McAllen, Texas. http://petermansbendel.com/quinta.asp
Thanks for adding me, and I hope you find my contributions to Hans fine blog helpful and educational.