Wood Carver Bio - Mark Akers
Mark resides in Lexington, South Carolina and in October 2019 retired from the University of South Carolina as a Mechanical Supervisor in the School of Medicine maintenance division, and is focused on developing his carving skills especially in the expressions of his caricatures. His love of carving began more than thirty years ago when he attended a carving meeting in a small basement of a church in Alton, Illinois. At this meeting he was inspired with a love of carving that has never died. His first attempt at carving produced a three-legged (because he cut off the fourth leg) “Pluto” which he still has because he believes in remembering the journey that takes you from a starting point to where you are today. Often times when new carvers meet Mark and remark on his work, he will show them “Pluto” and remind them that learning to carve is an ever evolving adventure.
Mark’s carvings consistently win awards at every competition he competes in including shows in Charlotte, Hickory, Piedmont and Statesville, North Carolina, as well as Johnson City, Tennessee. His two favorite shows are the Annual National Caricature Carvers Competition and the International Woodcarvers Congress. Mark has become well known in the carving world by winning numerous CCA awards at various shows, and capturing the Tom Wolfe Award at Charlotte. His carvings have also been selected for Purchase Awards as well as his most prestigious award which was being named the Grand Prize Winner in one of Wood Carving Illustrated’s Annual Santa Carving Competitions. Mark was likewise honored to be the featured carver in one of the Holiday Issues of Carving Magazine.
He instructs both privately and in group class settings. He likes to compare teaching to competing in “whittling” contests. You never know what type of wood (student) you will get or what the subject matter will turn out to be, but you’re always excited by the opportunity to advance skills and create something out of a block of wood. He enjoys sharing his techniques with beginner carvers, as well as those who have advanced skills.
Mark is a carver whose style has been greatly influenced by classes he has taken from Phil & Vicki Bishop, Harold Enlow, Steve Brown, Gary Falin, Allen Goodman, Pete LeClair, Don Mertz, Jon Nelson, Ross Oar, Pete Ortel, Mike Shipley, and Tom Wolfe. He is a true believer that no matter what class you attend you can always come away with new information to advance your carving style.
Mark can be reached for teaching seminars, competition judging, rough-out and completed carvings sales at:
504 Fox Trail Lane
Lexington, SC 29073
E-mail = email@example.com