Okey John Canfield, a coal miner, factory worker, outdoorsman and gunsmith, settled in Revenna, Ohio after obtaining a job at the Revenna Arsenal. Soon after he began carving birds, mostly from found objects. Having been a hunter, Okey focused his work on domestic species, but also enjoyed carving penguins, parrots, whooping cranes and occasionally a non-avian creature.
The salvaged materials that make up Okey’s sculptures had to be just right for use, such as the inner wood of a cedar telephone pole, which was often used for the bodies of larger species such as eagles. The wood, being seasoned, would carve easily and not split. Additionally, he used dowels for legs, and pine needles for talons.
Pictured above: Eagle and Chicken