Hearts of the South
Rocky Wade – American Folk Artist
A few weeks ago we stopped in Buena Vista, Ga., located about 40 minutes southwest of Columbus. Personally, I love little towns like these because you can just feel the history in their town squares with buildings dating back to the 1800’s.
“Rocky Wade Woodcarvings and Antiques” hung in front of an American flag, with the sign “Possum Crossing” hanging over the door. Three men with thick southern accents sat just inside next to the wide open door letting in the breeze . It was the woodcarvings in the window that drew us in, as well as the fact that I’m crazy about any antique store I come across!
The party dissipated as we came in and Rocky Wade sorted himself out of the group to greet us. I couldn’t help but jump into questions about his woodcarvings.
How did you get into doing your woodcarvings?
“Well, one day I saw these men whittling little figures out of wood and thought to myself, ‘That can’t be too hard!’ And so I tried it and have been doing it ever since!” he laughed. “I’ve won awards and ribbons, and do custom pieces when someone asks me to,” he said as he showed me some of his works that won in local fairs.
Being curious, I asked him about his history there in Buena Vista.
“Well, I’ve been here since 1947. Was born in Columbus and moved here when I was 5… I remember back when I was little and looked out across, where the gas station is now, and seeing a buggy and cotton gin. The seeds would spit up out of the gin with little pieces of cotton still attached. It was a sight, it looked like it was snowin’!”
To see more of his work visit his online shop here. If interested in a custom piece contact him at 229.314.0551.
Click here for more images from my trip to Rocky Wade Woodcarving and Antiques.
*Hearts of the South is a new photojournalism project by photographer, Christina Paz Photography. Click for more of her pictures, here.*