Donald K. Mertz

The WOOD BEE CARVER, Donald K. Mertz of Wilmington, Ohio has been actively carving since 1975 when he joined the National Wood Carvers Association.  He is a frequent contributor to its publication “Chip Chats” writing under the byline, “The WOOD BEE CARVER” whose philosophy is “Would be carvers would be carvers if they would carve wood.”

Mertz taught nine years at the annual War Eagle Seminars in Arkansas and continues to teach occasionally in the area close to his southwest Ohio home in a carving style he calls “whittle-carving” which is carving only with a knife.

Whittling is an art of  the common people often self learned, so it is natural to call his carving process “Whittle Folk Art.” His subjects are called “Whittle Folk” be they “Whittle Folk Geezers, Whittle Folk Gnomes, Whittle Folk Monks, Whittle Folk Busts, Whittle Folk Eggs, Whittle Folk Shelf Squatters or Whittle Folk ‘Pokes’.”

The fine detail of various whittling cuts creates an “Exaggerated Realism” in figures six inches tall down to miniatures.  The WOOD BEE CARVER, who began whittling as a boy growing up on a farm three miles south of Poneto, Indiana continues to be a would be carver always learning through the carving process as he has discovered that “wood carving is more the journey than the destination.”

His down to earth roots on the farm and sense of humor contributed to the creation of his “Hog Heaven Pig Seeds” and “Purtirina Chicks” novelities.

Since retiring with thirty nine years of service as a pastor of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Don Mertz is giving more of his time to carving daily, attending Wood Carving shows, teaching whittle-carving and encouraging others to experience the wonderful world of wood carving, an honest to goodness folk art carved by the best folk of all, as wood carvers are some of the best folk one will ever meet.

CARICATURE CARVERS OF AMERICA Don Mertz was honored with election into the Caricature Carvers of America on September 26, 2009.

So welcome to the WOOD BEE CARVER’s world through these pages.


Donald K. Mertz

729 Prairie Road

Wilmington, Ohio 45177-9683



Many Thanks Don for taking the time to carve this wonderful piece and providing step by step pictures/instructions to share with the wood carving community !

Miniature Carvings