One of the most unique things about Kelly is that he uses wood as his material of choice when designing a future bronze.
“Unless I’m doing a very large piece, I don’t use clay. I use the opposite process. Starting with a block of tupelo wood, I cut, saw and grind away everything that doesn’t look like a bird. The carvings may take hundreds of hours to complete but I attain so much more detail in wood than I can in clay. I use a variety of tools to accomplish my pieces. Band saws, grinders, files, wood burners and a small air driven hand piece called a Paragrave that spins at 400,000 rpm are just a few of the tools I use to create the carvings. I don’t sell my original wood carvings. There are too many hours involved in creating a new piece. I use these originals as masters, making molds from them, and then casting them in bronze. Limited editions are made of each piece, allowing many more people to experience these birds and animals as I have seen them in the wild. All my time spent out and about gives me the reference and photos that I need to create these pieces”.
Here are some of the amazing masterpieces carved from wood. Most of these carvings can be purchased as bronzes in our Bronze section.