Muswellbrook chainsaw sculptor Mark Ray maintains 'artistic' family tradition, with the help of sons Alex and Lochlan

TALENT definitely runs deep in the Ray clan.

The deeds of Stan are legendary in the Muswellbrook Shire, while his son Mark and grandsons Alex and Lochlan, both 17, are also making their marks in the world of chainsaw sculpting.

"I guess everyone is artistic in the family - to some degree," the 54-year-old said.

"Dad gave me a chainsaw when I was 50.

"So, I just picked it up [the skills] from him, without any lessons.

"Now, the twins - Alex and Lochlan - have taken it on, too.

"I was reasonably impressed with their first pieces of work, wooden hats, which aren't easy to do.

"Three generations in the one unique field is pretty unusual."

Despite his late start in the "profession", Mr Ray has carved more than 100 pieces over the past four years.

One of those items, which honoured motor-racing great Peter Brock, snared $5700 during the 2017 Upper Hunter Motoring Association's Global Village Motorfest auction.

"It's definitely a hobby.

"That, and restoring old cars," the Hunter Valley Operations employee said.

"But, I'll admit, it's getting out of control - and you need to be in the zone.

"I receive a lot of requests these days, even though there's no money involved," he added with a laugh.

"For me, it's all kicks and giggles."

Although Mr Ray admits his latest project, a 1956 Ford Customline, was also a labour of love.

"Even though I had the lump of wood - silky oak - for 18 months, it only took me three-to-four weeks," he said.

"It's the best stuff [for chainsaw sculpting] hands down.

"I've always maintained an interest in Customline vehicles.

"So, I'm keeping this one.

"My dad had a 1955 model, while my uncle Tom owned them as well.

"I also have a [real] full-size one that needs restoring.

"It's in my 'gunna do' pile.

"However, my love affair of old Fords is there for all to see."

His next task will be unveiled this weekend at the 2019 Burton Automotive Hunter Valley Steamfest at Maitland.

"I'm currently working on a train for that event," Mr Ray explained.