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Hi- I'm Jim O'Dea - welcome to my web site where I highlight the

Southwest Florida Woodcarving
Clubs, Shows and Classes

2015 Season Woodcarving Shows of interest to woodcarver's in the south Florida region click here

Woodcarving seminars held in the Englewood/Charlotte County, FL (between Venice and Port Charlotte) area in the 2015 season:

If you are looking for a place to stay in the area of Englewood, Fl the Gem Coast Inn is the closest Hotel with Lemon Bay Motel being the next closest and there are a few others in Englewood along with 2 Time Share places at the Beach- other areas to look at are Port Charlotte, Northport, and Venice which are all equal distance away.

  • Charley Phillips - Carving Flowers - January 26-30. This is a 5 day class with an option for a 3 day class doing a smaller project Two spots left in this class.. Contact Jim O'Dea for a spot in this class 941-697-2002

    Charley is known for her delicate floral carvings on many practical and useful items. Decorative painter for many years, she turned to woodcarving in 1995. Her work has won awards in several regional woodcarving shows. She has written articles for Woodcarving Illustrated issues #32 and #35 featuring floral relief carving projects. Charley won "Best of Show" recently at the Dayton Ohio Artistry in Wood 2014 show.

    Possible class projects are shown below. Instructional Fee for the 5 day class is $175, 3 day option is $105. The Basswood box blank is $35, the Iris roughout is $75. If you prefer to do smaller less complicated projects, she will have various sized Basswood projects you may alternately choose from under $35. Call Charlie for other specific prices 817-489-5310. To ensure she has enough blanks and roughouts, students will need to identify the projects that want to do when they register for the class or take potluck on the day class starts.

    Tools- typical palm sized hand tools and a sharp knife. Charley use 20 degree #3 and #5 left and right skews for getting under the flower pedals. It would also be nice to have a large narrow V tool such as the OCCT 32 degree with palm handle or the Swiss made V tool (the 16/6 model and/or 16/3 which are hard to find 35 degree V-tools)and a 1/2 inch flat skew chisel. Charlie provides all paints but you need to bring a brush or two including a #5 round brush. Email Jim O'Dea at if you need any of these OCCT tools as only a limited number will be available.

    Charley won Best of Show in 2014 at Dayton Ohio Artistry in Wood Show with this carving- click here.

    click images for larger view

    Or see more of her carvings here.

  • Leah Goddard - Realistic Animals - "Moose". This class is full - contact Jim to be on a waiting list. Monday 9 February to 13 February 2015 in the Englewood area of Charlotte County, FL The Moose rough-out is 12" long x 6" wide" x 12" tall, (and a bit taller with the antlers which are attachments.) Roughout cost is $60. The cost for the class is $170 instructional fee. This is a new project for Leah which she is currently working on - antlers will be added. Below is a sketch and in progress picture of the Moose, more pictures will be posted when available.

    All students do not have to do the same project - chose one of her many other projects such as the Buffalo, Wolf, Bear, Skunk, Rabbit, Kitten in a Mitten, etc. or the new Hedgehog pictured below

    Using simple hand tools and a wood burner, students begin from a basswood rough-out, learning the techniques used to create any realistic animal. Close attention will be paid to detail, texturing and anatomy. Contact Jim O'Dea @ to reserve a spot in this class.

  • Pete LeClair - Caricature - 2 spots have opened up in this class- contact Jim at 941-697-2002 for the spots. Pete, the current President of the Caricature Carvers of America (CCA) will be teaching a 4 day full figure class in the Englewood area of Charlotte County, FL Tuesday thru Friday 17 - 20 February 2015. Cost of $135 includes the blank and a CD with step by step ictures of the project. Contact Jim O'Dea @ to reserve a spot in this class.

    2015 project Pete has carved a new character for our 2015 project:

    Pete also teaches at the Lake Placid Woodcarving Experience in Sept, details here. and has taught at the CCA Carve-a-long East held in Lake Placid, NY in May each year - see details here.

    Pete, a resident of Gardner, Massachusetts, has been carving since 1973 and began showing his work in 1990. In 1994 Pete won Best of Show at the Susquehanna Decoy and Woodcarving Show in Pennsylvania, and is a two time Texas Whittling Champion in the open competition! See more about Pete LeClair and his woodcarvings.

    Pete has a painting video on YouTube click here.

    Pete teaches in a very structured manner, step by step. Thus to get the full benefit of the class students must be there at the start and stay thru the end of the class.

    Pete recommends (but not required) : 1/4, 3/8,1/2" #9 sweep Ramelson or OCCT, 3/8, 1/2: #7 sweep Ramelson or OCCT 3/4 inch #7 or 8 long handle OCCT 5/8 V short blade 3" handle OCCT (this is a "soft" V) 5/16 V short handle(this is a "soft" V) OCCT Knife Pete will have several extras of these recommended gouges with him for the students to use during the class or purchase.

    Pete is a member of the prestigious Caricature Carvers of America. He was inducted into CCA in September 1994. He now teaches seminars throughout the country and recently taught and lectured in the UK and Australia. He is the author of three books. Carving Caricature Heads & Faces, Carving Caricature Figures from Scratch and "Carving A Caricature Bust". Pete also contributed to the book Carving the Full Moon Saloon and Carving the Circus. You can see Pete's books at here on Amazon Books

  • Dennis "Butch" Clark- Butch will teach 2 separate classes - a 3 day Chickadee class and a 2 day Habitat class during week of 2-6 March 2015 - take one or both. Contact Jim O'Dea @ to reserve a spot in these classes.

    Carving and painting Habitat - 2 day class Monday and Tuesday 2,3 March 2015. One spot open in this class - contact Jim 941-697-2002 to register. Choose your own Habitat for a bird you have already completed or anticipate doing - possible Habitat such as under the Cardinal and Goldfinch below or some combination of the type in between. For those continuing with the "Realistic Chickadee" class they may want to do the habitat pictured with the "Realistic Chickadee" below. The instruction fee is $100 per student which includes the pattern, tupelo blank(s) and paint.
    Students will need to identify the projects that want to do when they register for the class or take potluck on the day class starts.
    Perhaps you would like to design your own habitat - contact Butch and discuss possibilities with him ASAP so he has time to cut what you may want -

    "Carving and Painting A Chickadee" -3 day power carving class in the Englewood area of Charlotte County, FL Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 4,5,6 March 2015. Two spots left in this class. The instruction fee is $150 per student which includes the pattern, tupelo blank, & glass eyes. The student will have a choice of either of 2 styles of Chickadee - the "Young Whimsical Chickadee" or the "Realistic Chickadee" as pictured below. Students will need to identify the projects that want to do when they register for the class or take potluck on the day class starts.
    "Young Chickadee" - click images for larger view "Realistic Chickadee"

    Student should have either a Dremel or RAM or similar types of rotary tool. etc. if you don't have one contact Jim O'Dea for a loaner or to purchase. A dust collector is required. If you don't have one conact Jim O'Dea for a loaner or for instructions on making one from a box fan and a furnace filter costing about $25.

    Tool bits Butch recommends are: either a kutzall or burr for rough cutting, a medium sized sanding drum (150 to 220 grit), a medium sized ruby or diamond carver (tear or tree shaped) and a small conical shaped texturing stone (white or blue). A small piece of #220 sandpaper. -A wood burner is needed for detailing the feathers. A stylus for burnishing. We will paint with acrylic colors. Students will need a coarse bristle gesso brush, a number 6 or smaller round brush and a very small round detailing brush.

    Note: Butch will have a table at the Charlotte County Woodcarvers Club- Myakka River Woodcarvers Club show on 1 March and can help you pick out bits that ypu may need. If you don't have a rotary power tool contact Jim O'Dea about a loaner or to purchase one.

    Butch will supply:
    - a rock for texturing
    - a pattern
    - a tupelo blank for 7.5" weathered wood habitat which is an acceptable size for the Chickadee.
    - a 1.5" square acorn blank

    In Butch's previous classes with me, all students have been able to finish by the end of the class. Contact Jim O'Dea @ to reserve a spot in this class. if you took the Nuthatch class last year, you may want to do the habitat pictured below.

    Butch Clark makes his home in a wooded area of rural Darke County, Ohio. The surrounding environment is alive with inspiration for his artwork as it thrives with an abundance of songbird species. However, Butch's art interest didn't begin with woodcarving, or birds.

    Butch began drawing at an early age. He quickly realized his gift, and began taking professional art lessons at the age of eleven. After serving two years in the United States Army from 1966 to 1968, Butch evolved his artistic abilities. In 1976, he completed a four year International Correspondence commercial art course. Soon, his skills were being recognized locally. He began designing logos for schools, corporations, local organizations, and sporting goods suppliers.

    It wasn't until 1992 that Butch began to apply his art skills to woodcarving. Inspired by a lifelong appreciation for nature and a keen interest in bird species, he took lessons from a local woodcarver and soon he was creating his signature songbirds. His first carving was a Northern Cardinal, the official state bird of his native Ohio.

    Butch has become well established in his field, and is highly respected by his peers because of the unique attention to detail evident in his work. Recognized nationally in the woodcarving community, he has won numerous awards including at the Ward World Wildfowl Competition in Ocean City, Maryland and at the International Woodcarvers Congress in Maquoketa, Iowa. His carvings have been featured in national publications such as Chip Chats, Woodcarving Illustrated and Carving Magazine. A gallery of his birds can be viewed in the spring 2009 issue of Carving Magazine.

    Butch is a member of the Brukner Nature Carvers woodcarving club in Troy, Ohio. He spends much of his time sharing his creative ideas and teaching his techniques through carving classes, carving demonstrations and by speaking at local organizations.

    If you want information on upcoming seminars, e-mail Jim O'Dea

    a few of Jim O'Dea's wood carvings

    Clubs in Southwest Florida

    For a list of clubs in all Florida