Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Chippawa Thunderbird

On Feb.26, 2009, while having a coffee at the always-friendly-service Timmy's in Chippawa, I met wood sculptor Rich Bailey working on his Thunderbird, which he had carved out of the main trunk of a maple tree recently cut down by the city. The wings are actually carved from two trunks of the tree as it branched up. He had sculpted the tree-trunk into a Thunderbird eagle last week with a chain-saw, then afterwards worked details with a chisel. Today he was painting.
above: Feb.26, 2009 - artist Rich Bailey works on his Thunderbird. That's the Chippawa bridge at the left, which crosses the Welland River (also known as Chippawa Creek). Front St. is to the right; Macklem St., which leads directly to Niagara Falls about five minutes away, is off to the left.
Photos by R. Bobak, taken Feb.26, 2009. Click on photos to enlarge!
The carved Thunderbird eagle is in front of the Tim Hortons, near the south-west corner of Portage Rd. and Front St., just west of the Welland River. The Chippawa Timmy's chipped in help create the carving.
(click: Niagara Falls, then and now: village of Chippawa to see how the maple tree, with its two main trunks, looked before, in 1995, and in 2008)

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