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Elmwood wood sculptor livens up the area

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Wood carver Bruce Macdonald at work in his front yard on one of his pieces.

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Wood carver Bruce Macdonald at work in his front yard on one of his pieces. Photo Store

Bruce Macdonald loves to sketch, draw and do wood sculpting.

His work, displayed on Pentland Avenue, first caught my eye a while ago.

It was, as he says, a tree stump, albeit one six or seven feet high. Bruce had suggested that the owner of the yard "let me carve a face on him."

Suddenly I was aware of a face on the stump carved into the top part of the "tree." Bruce added clothes, a top hat and an owl on top of that. The lady of that house had no qualms about letting me photograph it.

I noticed another stump Gilmore Avenue another, or so I thought. But no, this time it was a very thick log someone had brought to him. Again, it was about eight to 10 feet tall and had quite a circumference.

And there it was — a brown bear, with a little bear on top of the big one. The little brown bear is holding what appears to be a hive with a few yellow and brown bees fluttering out of it.
A few weeks later I noticed another plain, thick log standing upright beside the "Pooh Bear" (as I called it in my head). I couldn’t contain my curiosity any longer. I asked questions and learned a lot.

The second log was supported by what appeared to me to be scaffolding. It has to be very strong to withstand the shocks brought to bear on it by the small chain saw Bruce uses in his cuttings. The original sculpture has a steel rod going into the ground from the log and a wad of cement helping to hold it in place.

Why does he do it? Why does anyone do things like that?

It is a form of expression and a vehicle used to speak things that are not always explainable, he says.

He is retired, and takes the time to make many things. His back yard is very full of objects you don’t always expect to see. But I’m sure his grandchildren get a great deal of pleasure from them, and he certainly enjoys doing this sort of thing.

His relatives are fortunate to have someone in their midst who is so talented. They are often recipients of the fruits of his labours, either on wood or on paper.

Bertha Klassen is a community correspondent for Elmwood.

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