Brooklyn-based artist Dennis McNett carves into large pieces of wood and transforms their surfaces into energetic characters and dynamic ocean waves. His colorful works sometimes combine two creatures – like wolves and snakes – and the results are incredibly imaginative and often fierce looking. McNett depicts the sharp teeth of a leopard in minute, impressive detail.
These unique pieces are hand carved, and they start with McNett drawing the design directly onto the wood. Then, using tools like a gouge, he cuts into the surface and creates patterns that mimic fur, waves, and the veins on leaves. Everything is painted once the carving is done. McNett adds bold colors and eye-catching black outlines to stylize his works and give them a fantastical, cartoonish feel.
As a child, McNett was encouraged in art making. His blind grandfather repeatedly told him that his drawings were good, and it was a catalyst for his later career. Now, he's been carving wood for over 18 years with no signs of stopping. His Instagram showcases works in progress and newly-finished pieces.