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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Bill Groves 'The Northern Crafter' receives international recognition on his wood crafting and carving

Bill Groves, also known as "The Northern Crafter" has received international recognition for his wood carvings mostly created from his home workshop in Chapleau.

A major publication in which Bill has been featured is 'Creative Woodwork and Craft', a craft international magazine home.

Although Bill says he has been making things since he was a "young lad", but  he devoted more time to it after retiring several years ago from a successful business career.

Bill shares part of his story: "I have been making things since I was a young lad (13/17 years old ) such as birch candle holders, a four foot train set for my young brother, two dozen full size arrows for a  bow, an 18 inch totem pole, etc ( no money to buy such things back then )."

Bill added that he "couldn't buy things for Christmas gifts so I made them. It's funny because my Mother would never let my little brother play with the train set . She put it up on his dresser so he could just look at it".

 
"When he  was about 45 she came to Chapleau for a visit and brought me the totem pole I had made. She had saved it for all those years !"

 Bill also had  the two dozen arrows when he moved to Chapleau  and  his boys were getting to the age of wanting to use the bow so "needless to say it wasn't long before they were pretty much trashed". I still have a few that I saved from certain death".

 
Although Bill continues his lifelong hobby  he admits to having slowed down now on his  crafting  and carving.

 
My  breathing is not what it used to be so even with a proper mask on, my wife, Barbara still gets too nervous for me to spend much time in my workshop".

 However, at his cottage, it is another story.  "I have been carving a couple of antlers for people out at the cottage during the summer when I can do them outside on  my cottage workshop deck where I can watch out over the lake and carve to my hearts content."
 
He cautions that carvers should take precautions so as not to affect their breathing.
 
Bill is also an incredibly good photographer, and has shared many of his Chapleau and area scenes.
 
I also extend my most sincere congratulations to Bill on having been recognized by the Township of Chapleau for his volunteer work over the years. When I was home for the 20th anniversary reunion of Chapleau High School in 2012 , it was great to see the Waterfront Development and Peace Park --- areas where I played with my friends for years especially the Big Rock.
 
Congrats also to all who worked with Bill on these projects.

 Bill says that those interested in seeing more of his work can add him on Facebook and his email is billgroves@sympatico.ca. My email is mj.morris@live.ca

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Michael J Morris

Michael J Morris
MJ with Buckwheat (1989-2009) Photo by Leo Ouimet

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