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Coastal Carvings & Sculptures

A brief history of Phil Costello and how his art has developed into a much sought after form of wood sculptures and beautifully carved art pieces.

The skilled carver has mastered the coordination between
the eye, hand and the imagination !
-Michelangelo

Since a very young age the infatuation of the wood has drawn Phil’s attention. With extensive knowledge, training, and experience in all forms of design Phil’s creation of wood sculptures and prolific carvings was just a matter of time. In a position where he could finally exit the world of everyday work Phil went knocking on the door of Dimitrious Klatsis a long time skilled master carver by trade and instructor in the art of wood carving. Phil knew that time spent with Dimetrious could open the door to a world of carving that would never close. His experience and time spent with a master carver allowed Phil the opportunity to understand the intricacies of wood carving. Determination and natural talent allowed him the opportunity to develop the knowledge and skill he needed to produce custom wood sculptures. Feeling it important to achieve other perspectives Phil spent time with other master wood carvers and drew design considerations and conclusions from their work. The discovery was that a talent was now realized and that the potential for creation was unlimited. His direction then was to focus on what it was he really wanted to carve and where the wood sculpturing and carving was going to be done.

Wood is the medium in which the skilled carver communicates with the rest of the world.
-Author Unknown

The second part of the journey took Phil to Maine and the many nautical beauties of the coast. He knew right from the beginning that in and around the ocean lay many beautiful treasures that with time, patience and determination many of these treasurers could be duplicated in wood. A studio was opened within Castaways at Compass Pointe in Southern Maine and wood carving and sculpturing began on a daily basis. The studio is situated on Route #1 Wells Maine just over the border from Ogunquit where you can smell the salt air and hear the pounding of the ocean waves. Many tourists and residents alike now get the opportunity to view his work in person and more often then not observe Phil in the studio carving his next piece.

The art of reveling beauty lies in removing what conceals it
-Judith Hanson Lasafer

Most of the carvings that you see on display have a nautical theme or pertain to the ocean. However it is the challenge of that new and different carving or sculpture that Phil enjoys through his commissioned work. Clients come up with some unique and different projects that require his carving creativity from time to time such as the African Elephant that was most recently commissioned by a client.

Wood carving is such an amazing skill, it’s not what you take
away that makes the difference, its what you leave behind.
-Wick Ahrens

Phil has discovered his passion for art in the form of wood carving and sculptures early on in his life and now gets the opportunity to practice whenever he can. As youngsters we all have natural creativity that sometimes is masked because life gets in its way. For anyone traveling in southern Maine this is a great opportunity for you to view in person the natural beauty of wood in its artistic form. You will find great entertainment and joy in seeing the process of revealing the beauty that lies in the depths of wood.

Phil Costello, master wood carver in Wells, ME
Phil at home at his carving studio in Wells, Maine. The studio is located in Castaways at Compass Pointe a home decor store located at 71 Post Road in Wells just north of the Ogunquit town line.
Phil Costello with Dimitrios carving wood in his studio
This is Phil Costello under the guidance of  master wood Carver/Sculpture Dimitrios Klitsas at Dimitrios wood carving studio in Hampden Massachusetts. Dimitrios is not only a skilled professional but an instructor who  awakened the the ability in Phil to produce beautifully sculptured wood art.
Phil Costello and Chris Pye Master Wood Carvers
World renown wood carver and author of many carving books Chris Pye from England gives the thumbs up with Phil Costello. Phil had just completed a two week carving and wood sculpture seminar with Chris at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Rockport , Maine.
Wick and Phil Costello at his studio in VT
Phil Costello with Wick Ahrens at his studio in Vermont. For many years Wick carved whales in Vermont. He was a gifted and talented artisan whose work is on display in many public locations and in privately held collections. Phil learned so much from his time spent with Wick. He was an encyclopedia of knowledge and skill . A true void was created in the world of carving upon Wicks passing in 2016. Time spent with Wick encourage Phil to research the treasures of the seas and bring that to life in the form of nautical wood carvings and sculptures.
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