Crafty Cana­di­ans

This mas­ter carver comes by his tal­ent hon­estly

Our Canada - - Features | Departments - by Paul Bary­luak,

Ihave loved wood­work­ing all my life, thanks largely to my fa­ther and grand­fa­ther, who were great teach­ers. They taught me that in or­der to build any­thing, you first have to un­der­stand the struc­tural part of the design.

My in­ter­est in build­ing model ships be­gan when I worked with my fa­ther, who re­paired real boats. I be­gan build­ing model ships us­ing stan­dard blue­prints, but when I be­came bored with that, I started de­sign­ing my own blue­prints for projects. I’d look at pic­tures in books, sketch a design, cre­ate blue­prints on pa­per and then trans­fer the design to wood.

Along with mod­ern tools, I re­ally en­joy us­ing old-fash­ioned ones to achieve the look that I want. Many of the tools I use, such as old hand saws and rasps, have been passed down through my fam­ily. I use all types of wood—in­clud­ing pine, wal­nut, maple, ma­hogany and ebony—to cre­ate carv­ings of wooden sail­ing ships, a log­ging truck and a cater­pil­lar skid­der, just to name a few.

Liv­ing on the shores of Lake Su­pe­rior has taught me to have great re­spect for the cap­tains and crews of all sail­ing ves­sels, from the old wooden sail­ing ships to the doomed Great Lakes freighter the Edmund Fitzger­ald. On the model ships I build, no de­tail is too small to in­clude. I carve fig­ure­heads, in­stall rig­ging and cre­ate tiny ma­hogany planks for decks.

Among my other pieces is a Har­ley-david­son mo­tor­cy­cle, a Bri­tish man-of-war ship with more than 100 guns, a D-10 cater­pil­lar bull­dozer and an Alaskan king crab boat. I also en­joy hand­craft­ing full-size fur­ni­ture such as hutches and cab­i­nets.

I am proud to have had some of my mod­els on dis­play at the Sault Ste. Marie museum over the years, as well as in sev­eral lo­cal busi­nesses. Hun­dreds of hours of work have gone into each of the pieces I’ve carved and I’ve en­joyed every minute of it! n

Top: Paul shows off his model of the fa­mous WWII Ger­man bat­tle­ship Bis­marck, which took him more than 800 hours to com­plete. Bot­tom: This im­pres­sive model is a Bri­tish manof-war ship.

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