Introduction to Wood Carving with Hand Tools

Event Speakers


  • Robinson Cook
    Robinson Cook
    Carver, Artist

    Art is a crucial but often under valued aspect of our society. For me art that reflects place is especially important. I draw my inspirations from living immersed in nature on a small island in Clayoquot Sound on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The ocean, forests and people that make up the landscape shape my art. I learn a lot from the teachings of my adopted Nuu-Chah-Nulth family, especially my brothers Gordon and Qwaya. Home life with my partner Mary and daughter Cedar provide the foundation for everything that I do.
    Like many west coasters, I began carving close to 30 years ago with Henry Nolla, an iconic carver in Tofino. My working life began in creative home building and from there I became a student of the fine woodworking revolution. Building cabinets and furniture have been my staples for years however I always had carving projects on the side. Carving is now the main focus of my work. I am full of ideas, visions and stories to tell with my carving.
    Based out of a resurrected, intertidal work shed on Strawberry Island I carve exclusively salvaged and ethically sourced coastal woods. My process includes power tools but it is the hand tool work that is the joy and meditation of carving for me. Most of my carvings include some sort of precision joinery, combining my skills developed as a cabinet/ furniture maker with my vision for carving unique pieces.
    For the last several years I have been an active member of the Carving on the Edge Festival team. We are promoting and supporting the burgeoning carving culture on the coast. For me the festival has contributed to my growth as an artist, carver and person tremendously. My carvings can be found in galleries in Tofino, Port Alberni and Salt Spring Island.

Event Countdown

The event is finished.



March 27, 2021


10:00 am - 12:00 pm



This workshop film, hosted by Robinson Cook, will introduce beginner to intermediate carvers to wood grain, alignment and west coast species, as well as carving tool types, etiquette, and safety.  Robinson will demonstrate the use of various knives to illustrate their application on different types of carvings, as well as speak to sharpening, tool care techniques and supplies. Resources for purchasing tools will be shared. 

Bring any carving tools you may have and a practice piece of wood to try out different techniques as they are demonstrated. There will be an opportunity for peer-to-peer learning through the Zoom chat as we watch the workshop and learn together.

The playlist can be found here.

Carving on the Edge

2021 Registration

Please fill out the form below. We will be reaching out prior to the festival with links and information required to attend. We also want your input, so please take a moment to provide us some discussion topics (optional). Note: you only need to do this once.