Where nature and art meet!
Earl Worick grew up in rural Virginia where his interest in life was obviously not the same as his peers. He took pride in his natural love for classical music while most everyone around him was a fan of country western and other music. In his teens, Earl became a tinkerer with a desire to create things mechanically and electrically. At an early age he had an unusual desire to venture overseas and mingle with foreigners. He considered himself very fortunate to join the military where he volunteered for an overseas assignment in the Far East that resulted in a twelve-year stint in and with the Army and Air Force. In Japan he was introduced to the classic guitar and became a dedicated student for two years. Unfortunately a nerve condition prevented him from attaining the status he so much desired. After returning to the states, Earl became acquainted with Spanish guitarists in California where he resided for thirty-some years. During those years he became interested in making capos for many guitarists he came to know, including some world-renowned flamenco guitarists. He also made a special miniature saddle inlay for Clint Eastwood while Clint was making a movie, “The Rookie” in San Jose, CA.
Making the little wooden capos for guitarists was a success because the handmade ones were more elegant than the ones available commercially. Making capos led him to sources for buying exotic hardwoods from around the world. Soon he realized a profound satisfaction in designing miniature guitars and other guitar-related art pieces that were a hit among Spanish guitarists.
The more he worked with wood, the more Earl realized his ability to shape various objects. One thing led to another that included carving pumpkins each Halloween; this became an attractive event each year for ten years in Mt. View, CA. Eventually he carved pumpkins for two television stations, Sunset Magazine, and he won pumpkin-carving contests in several cities.
After relocating to Virginia in 1996, Earl had a renewed interest in woodwork, but this time it was a new source for wood that aroused new ideas. He discovered that many pieces of wood, which had been shaped by nature, provided a head start in visualizing a new art form that would lead to creating interesting animals or whatever came to mind. This led to the slogan: “Giving Nature a Helping Hand.” Because Earl has access to many acres of wooded lands, he began gathering wood for developing a number of art pieces that are obviously different, most of which are truly one-of-a-kind.
With the varied interests, which held him captive most of his life, he found yet another art form that takes him by surprise; he discovered the hard-shell gourds and how they have made an impact in the art world. After joining the American Gourd Society, he began to realize the endless possibilities that gourds offer by allowing the artists to run wild with their imaginations. His comment on gourds was: “Unlike pumpkins, what you create with gourds is preserved indefinitely.”
Recently Earl discovered how much fun it is to carve rutabagas, apples and turnips and then watch them shrink to less than half the original size as they age into wrinkled and comical faces.
This blog will provide an insight to Gourdguy’s varied art pieces from inception to the final products.
More about Earl here.