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      Local woman carves new career

      Chips and dust fill the air with every cut as Marie Serafin works on the art of woodcarving.

      "I won't say, you know, the corny thing like, you become one with the carving, but it does take over your focus," said Serafin. "It comes to life in front of your eyes and it's like, wow, I did that!"

      She started off by working with fellow carver John Mykkanen, adding oils to his work. He pushed Marie to carve, and now almost two years later she's created hundreds of different sculptures for their business Wood Works Chainsaw Carving.

      "Her cuts began getting deeper and deeper. She got further along now her sculptures have turned right around. It's just amazing the things she can do in a short period of time," said Mykkanen.

      He also said that Marie may be one of the only female chainsaw carvers in the U.P. Finishing a carving can take a day or even a couple of days, and it all depends on the kind detail required.

      It's a multi-step process, Serafin added, starting off with carving the wood. Once that's done, the wood is burned, then sanded down, and then it is detailed.

      "The process of removing a lot of wood takes time, especially when you're talking in between legs or figures. The hardest part is getting in there with a chainsaw and doing it the way you want it to come out," Serafin said.

      Serafin encourages anyone to try it out. There are plans for a woodcarving festival and hopefully teaching seminars.