SandraHealy's Bio | Shop Home



McKinleyville, CA, United States

Quick Blurb

I carve many species of wild animals. My inspiration is the quick glimpse, a color, a shape, of an animal seen in the wild.


Carving animals and painting! Hiking, backpacking. Running. Traveling in my Leisurely Manor, ie VW camper for hiking in Death Valley, Rockies, Utah, Trinity Alps. Avoiding urban areas. Splitting firewood, mowing meadows, watching wildlife in my yard.

Skills and Techniques

I do most of my carving with knives and chisels instead of power tools, though I use power tools for roughing them out and sanding. Of course, I sharpen the tools myself. Painting with an airbrush is very interesting and challenging, especially on the rounded surfaces.

Get to Know

HISTORY I've been carving animals since 1975. As my skills developed, so the style evolved. As my knowledge increased, so the species multiplied until I made over 250 of them. I studied art in college, but my main skills of carving with knives and chisels, and airbrush painting are self-taught.

TECHNIQUE After the shapes are roughed out from basswood (American Linden), a hardwood tree native to the U.S., I then quietly carve the creatures using hand tools. Colored inks are applied to the sanded wood with an airbrush, and 3 coats of urethane brushed on to finish them. There are photos showing the process on this page, and more at

STYLE Within their inch thickness, using carving and painting techniques, I suggest a more fully round figure. It is a unique style which I have developed over more than 30 years.

When not carving animals, it is my pleasure to hike, backpack, and run. For photos of these activities (and of how I create the animals) see

RETIREMENT NOTE: I am retiring from carving but my remaining carvings will continue to be available through the end of 2014.

Bio Photo Gallery