Chunks of wood spring to life when shaped by the experienced hands of Jack Murphy and grandson Joey Frampton.
The talented woodworkers are members of the Nature Coast Wood Carving Club, which will have a booth this week at the Citrus County Fair.
Murphy, the mentor, is originally from Long Island, New York. His skill is self-taught. As an avid duck hunter, he began carving his own decoys; soon he began entering competitions — and winning.
Over the years, he has won numerous best-of-shows, first-places and awards of merit for his artistic work.
“After I moved to Florida, I got away from it for a few years, then, got back into it,” he said.
Murphy likes to carve fish and birds. He uses basswood for his pieces.
Frampton, 16, recently won “Best of the Show” in the adult division of the Florida State Fair. They didn’t have a youth division, so he competed against 22 adults.
Joey’s “Black Capped Chickadee” perched on branches took “Best of the Show Novice Adult.”
“I started woodcarving when I was 12 years old,” Frampton said.
Both use knives, various picks and hand tools for their wood carving.
In April, they will be participating in the Ward World Carving Contest in Ocean City, Maryland, a three-day show.
Nature Coast Wood Carving Club began in 1994 with 10 members. Two months later, it expanded to 18 carvers. The club meets several times a month in Inverness, Lecanto, Hernando and in Homosassa.
Visitors are welcome at carving sessions, and members are always learning new techniques and different aspects of carving.
“It’s $15 per year or $20 per year for a family and one does not have to be an experienced woodcrafter to join,” Murphy said.
“I like being part of the club,” Frampton said. “You meet a lot of new people and they are always willing to offer help when needed.”
The club creates wood-carved canes with a duck-head handle and plaques for military veterans in Citrus County. The club also donates money to Citrus County libraries to purchase woodcarving books.
For more information on the Nature Coast Carving Club, visit https://naturecoastcarvingclub.com/ or contact Murphy at 352-637-5398.