Ernestina, an artisan in Ghana, is dressed to the nines for company but doesn’t hesitate for a moment to climb into her carving workshop and show us how it’s done.
When she carves it’s a full body effort. She positions herself on a tree stump, across from her material. She uses her legs, clad in beautiful orange embellished pants, to pin the wood in place and begins chiseling, wood chips flying. She kicks off her shoes for better traction.
It’s mesmerizing to see how quickly the wood changes from a plank with a rough pencil sketch to the form of a mother.
“When I carve, I feel like God has given me something to create,” Ernestina says. She’s been honing her craft for 20 years, since she was 15 years old. Women carvers are still not very prevalent in Ghana, she says, but she loved the craft so much she kept working at it.
To read the full story, visit our Medium page here.