I do hope you enjoy browsing through the web site but firstly, I would like to tell you how I got to where I am now.........
JAN FITCH was born in Hertfordshire, England .......
I worked as a secretary and personnel officer until 1977 when I was given the opportunity of joining a 38' ketch to sail from England to the United States. A year later and having visited ten countries, the voyage ended in the Chesapeake Bay region of Maryland where unknowingly, my career at that point would change to that of an artist.
During my stay there, I met a local woodcarver and was fascinated how he made the wooden bird look so soft. By saying "I wish I could do that" and with some encouragement, I decided to attend his evening classes in bird carving. Six months later I continued to travel and practiced my hobby by carving for friends and acquaintances - any corner of the boat or space on the dock was my workshop. Two years after my initial introduction and some self teaching, I made woodcarving a full time profession.
My love of birds is expressed in my carvings and cast paper sculptures, capturing the behaviour of ducks and birds as seen in nature. Using either wood or a man made medium for my carvings, the birds are intricately shaped, detailed with feather layout, textured and painted with acrylics to replicate the actual bird. When hearing comments like "they look so soft" I know I "got it right". The birds are either mounted on driftwood for wall hanging or set into a habitat scene for table top display. Resin reproductions of some original carvings are also available. My other medium of choice is cotton linter. I design the image as a bas relief sculpture in clay and in turn, create a limited edition cast paper replica of the original relief. Each piece is hand pulled creating it's own unique characteristic, then either tinted or penciled with realistic detail and framed.
I have participated as judge and exhibitor in shows and competitions throughout Canada, the US and England where my work has received much acclaim. Among the awards are many "Best of Show" from the prestigious Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto and the Ward Foundation World Championship in Maryland. I have designed and carved original compositions to be reproduced for the Canadian, American and European markets and having taught and given seminars at schools, colleges and carving groups, I now hold carving classes in my studio.
My husband and I live on beautiful Wolfe Island, Ontario but I can be found working and displaying my art at my Kingston studio where visitors are welcome to watch me create and view the finished pieces.
An appointment is suggested to be sure the studio is open.