Legendary Master Woodcarver David Stehly Posthumously Releases Book on Wildlife-themed Walking Sticks


Walking sticks have become much more than walking aides throughout the years. They have elevated to an art form. David Stehly, master woodcarver best known for his walking sticks, is posthumously releasing a book called Hand Carving Your Own Walking Stick: An Art Form this May 2017.

Stehly was interested in woodcarving since he was a child but turned to it full-time after having served faithfully in the US Navy during the Korean War and Gulf War and also after having earned a doctorate degree in chemistry. At that time, Stehly’s art blossomed and he won numerous awards. In a 2008 interview, he claims to have carved over 1900 walking sticks in a 30-year period.

Hand Carving Your Own Walking Stick

Carve beautiful wildlife walking sticks with step-by-step projects, ready-to-use patterns, an inspirational color photo gallery, and advice on wood sourcing and finishing.

I hold the cane with a bench vise and padding, V-shaped block while I carve.

~ David Stehly

Snake-adorned walking sticks became Stehly’s specialty. As the snakes twined perfectly around the walking stick, one would be reminded of the caduceus symbol and also of being among wildlife.

Wood Carving Tool

Woodcarving wildlife is popular among wood artists due to the fact that it offers many opportunities to create detailed works of art. For Stehly, however, being among wildlife was just as important. An avid record-keeper who documented all of his walking sticks, he recalls his most favorite stick was one he carved outdoors simply with a pocket knife.

Through Hand Carving Your Own Walking Stick: An Art Form, woodcarvers are invited to learn Stehly’s secrets to hand carving walking sticks through wildlife-themed examples. In addition to easy-to-follow carving instructions, the book also offers information on harvesting and curing wood, plus advice on getting the best finishing results with paints, stains, varnishes, acrylics, and woodburning.

Other Titles from Chris Lubkemann

Tree Craft - 35 rustic projects that bring the outdoors in

Tree Craft

Invite Mother Nature into your home with 35 rustic projects that are both unique and functional.

The Little Book of Whittling

The Little Book of Whittling

18 fun and easy projects include knives, forks, birds, animals, trees, flowers, and more.

Stehly’s book is certain to become a staple among walking stick hobbyists.


Woodcarvers will have the opportunity to learn from a legend and also to honor an artist whose lifetime of incredibly exquisite woodcarving continues to inspire.