While woodworking alongside his father captured his attention as a teenager, Kevin Harvey got hooked on mastering the skilled art form of bowl carving just a few years ago, and says he’s been carving Indiana hardwoods ever since.
“I’ve always been interested in acquiring new techniques and skillsets within the woodworking genre,” Kevin says. “My uncle convinced me to study bowl carving under Blaine Berry, a well-known Indiana bowl and chair maker.”
The result? Every hand-carved bowl Kevin creates in his Brownsburg shop today is unique and vastly different from conventional bowls turned on a lathe.
“Relatively few woodworkers have experience with this traditional form of bowl making,” Kevin says. “I continue to refine my carving expertise through trial and error.”
His bowl-carving process involves only hand tools, and he performs most of the wood shaping with an adze (a tool similar to an axe, but with an arched blade). Other tools in his arsenal include: a carving mallet, gouges, hook knife, sloyd knife, carving axe, and more.
Kevin first carves the exterior into its final shape, then hollows out the interior to the desired wall thickness. The bowl then undergoes a drying process before Kevin sands, signs and dates it using a wood burner. To ensure long-term use and safekeeping, he applies a food-safe finish at the end.
Born and raised in Central Indiana, Kevin grew up learning how to identify the native timber and take a hands-on approach to everything from harvesting the hardwood materials through final production.
“I learned this unique method of bowl making that has been handed down through generations of native Hoosiers,” Kevin says. “I am interested in creating functional art forms that will be handed down to my children’s grandchildren.”
He also plans to teach bowl carving to a younger generation.
Date / Time