About the Artist
Vic Kirkman is a North Carolina artist who works intensely to advance his skills creating realistic birds in wood. He carves all types of waterfowl, but emphasis is on decorative decoys carved for competitions held on the East and Gulf Coasts.
Vic has lived in Raleigh since attending N.C. State University. Born in Lumberton, N.C. and raised in a hunting and fishing family, he developed an early interest in the wildlife indigenous to the swamps, rivers and woodlands of Southeastern North Carolina. This interest carried over into studies of the biological sciences in college and later employment in the biological supply field. Summer jobs included working with investigators of the N.C. Department of Wildlife/Inland Fisheries doing fish and fauna surveys of N.C. lakes and rivers.
Vic has been studying birds and their anatomy since the age of 12, always learning. He is currently teaching the art of sculpted decorative waterfowl to enthusiastic students from all walks of life. Many have already won major events at U.S. competitions and dozens of his students have won Best-of-Shows at IWCA shows, and the Ward World Championship.
Even though Vic has been carving seriously only since 1979, he moved up the ranks very rapidly. He competes in the professional rankings and has won numerous Best-in-Shows and always places in top honors at major competitions. He has been published in Wildfowl Carving Magazine. One exciting year he had three-in-a-row Best-In-Show wins at the Core Sound Wildfowl Festival, the East Carolina Wildlife Arts Festival,and the Mid-Atlantic Wildfowl Festival.
He has judged most of the major carving competition events in the Southeast and has been a judge of the N.C. Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest for two years. He has been an active member of the Ward Foundation and IWCA (International Wildfowl Carvers Association) and a founding member of the East Carolina Wildfowl Arts Festival.
Vic owes a great deal of credit to Mike Bonner who has been his mentor and teacher for over ten years.
Many Cajun carvers such as the Brunet family and Curt Fabre have also advised and taught Vic the styles they are famous for.
He has won many open class blue ribbons at the Ward World Championships and competitions everywhere and been a serious contender in "World Championship Pairs" several times and aspires to the Masters level.
He has been invited three times to teach in the National Education for the Arts program of the Ward Foundation;
Developed methods of teaching wildfowl carving and painting on the Internet and is the first to introduce a comprehensive wildfowl carving instruction program online from his website and recently via Zoom video conferencing. Teaching beginner to professional level bird and decoy carving in most styles. Vic sponsors a popular wildfowl carving facebook group of 2500 members called Bird Carvers Online.
Carvers are taught fundamentals of wildfowl carving on a suitable species of their choice. Techniques are learned which apply to carving most North American species of birds. No experience or special talents are necessary to learn this fascinating art form. Simple methodology and unique techniques are taught and can be learned by anyone. Those who have had some experience and produced completed works will learn advanced techniques and receive instruction on how to carve more complex and realistic attitudes of wildfowl. Emphasis is on artistry, fine detail and the professional touch.
Classes are now taught using the easy real-time video conferencing program ZOOM. Examples of some of his classes and demonstrations can be found here from the menu. (Demos with Vic) See his website at www.wildfowlart.com.
Vic Kirkman Is a major contributor to the advancement of this artistry through his teaching and excellent work. To do this successfully, people have to know who you are and that you are good at what you do.
"I want to leave some beautiful creations behind and inspire other carvers to advance the art form." Vic says.