Darren Jones is pleased with how his newest tree sculptures in Estevan turned out.
Jones used a chainsaw to carve a pair of 12-foot tree stumps in the 1200-block of Third Street; one was from a poplar tree and the other was from a Dutch elm. Those stumps were transformed into tributes to Estevan.
The tree located further to the west on Third Street is one that Jones christened The Essence of Estevan, because it recognizes industry, wildlife and scenery of the area. People will find an oil derrick, the two power stations, a grain elevator, and tributes to coal mining engraved.
Nature can be seen, thanks to animals found in the Estevan area and in Saskatchewan, such as burrowing owls, pheasants and foxes. Tiger lilies are depicted in the carving as well. The Souris River and the water tower also make an appearance.
There is also a healing circle in honour of Indigenous people.
The other tree, which recognizes sports in the community, includes a depiction of the Power Dodge Estevan Bruins mascot, Bruino the Bear, curling rocks and brooms, lacrosse sticks, a Saskatchewan Roughriders helmet, a football, a set of swimming goggles, a baseball bat, goaltender’s hockey pads and mask, and other markings.
Jones arrived in Estevan on June 27 to begin work on the trees. He started by working on the industry tribute tree, and then shifted to the sports tree. Once he was finished carving both, he applied urethane and was looking forward to having them finished on July 5.
“The people here are wonderful. It’s been an … exciting challenge to actually accomplish this much carving in really nine days.”
Jones reiterated previous statements about how much he enjoyed working with the wood.
The trees weren’t the only ones that he completed while in Estevan. He also tackled a project for Rick Malaryk on a couple of poplar trees at Malaryk’s home on King Street.
The first depicts a rose at the top with a mother bear and a bear cub at the bottom.
It’s a meaningful carving for Malaryk, as his mother was named Rose, and she liked the flowers.
“My aunt came over, and she said, ‘Rick, that’s so nice,’” recalled Malaryk.
He decided to have Jones carve a sculpture out of the tree a couple of years ago when he started taking the tree down. The two met through Lester Hinzman, who first had the idea to have Jones create the Estevan Soldiers’ Tree.
The shape of the tree fit well for the concept of a mother bear carrying the baby.
Jones also began work on what they expect will be a portrait tree, which will incorporate Malaryk’s face.
It was also good wood to work with, Jones said.
With the location on King Street, Jones expects a lot of people will see it when passing by.
“This is a really busy street. And everybody seems to be talking about this project when they come over to the other one (on Third Street).
For more on the trees on Third Street, please visit www.estevanmercury.ca.