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 Greg Woodard  (1958 - )

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Lived/Active: Utah/Arizona      Known for: bird of prey sculpture

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It's A Stretch #3/23
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The son of a cabinet-maker, Greg Woodard grew up around wood.  After high school, he worked as a switchman for the Santa Fe Railroad and carved birds in his spare time. After 10 years, he was laid off from the railroad and became a full time wood carver.

Working with tupelo gum, he fashions birds to appear as though they are about to take flight.  He is especially fond of wood from the tupelo tree, which grows in bayous in the South.  The strong dense lumber is ideal for carving details like claws and toenails. He designs the base first and then carves the bird to go with it.  He works primarily on commission.

Biography from Altamira Fine Art:
Greg Woodard is a sculptor with bronze and wood and currently resides in Brigham City, Utah.  Growing up in Prescott, Arizona, Woodard took only a few art classes in high school and is largely self-taught.  While attending a local carving club, he was persuaded by artist Lance Turner to enter his decoy into a Sacramento carving show. As a result, his career blossomed.

He later entered shows around the country, including the Ward World Competition in Ocean City, MD, recognized as one of the more prestigious bird carving competitions in the world. 

Experimentation, artistic growth, and new experiences have always been instrumental factors in advancing his art.

Woodard has been a consistent strong voice for the importance of proper reference and total familiarity with one’s subject.  Absolute confidence in one’s reference implies knowledge of the subject or bird from all angles, attained by acquiring measurements, studying live birds as well as skins, and researching photographs of the subject. Understanding the environment, habits, and characteristics of the bird is also crucial.

A master falconer, he devotes a great deal of time to his raptors and carries his love and knowledge of these powerful birds into his work.  In decorative life-size wood sculpture, he is a five-time Best of Show winner at the Ward World Competition and the 1992 World Class winner with a preening American kestrel.

In 2000, Greg Woodard also captured the World category in interpretive sculpture with a rendition of a prairie falcon chasing several swallows.  To date, he is the only artist to have won both decorative and interpretive categories at the world level.  He has won numerous awards at other shows and has participated in traveling exhibitions as well as the Leigh Yawkey “Birds in Art” display several years including 2005 with a life size snowy owl bronze sculpture.


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