About Woodcarver Steve Tomashek


My Story

 Steve Tomashek’s fun miniatures explore one-knife carving on a whole new scale! Each of Steve Tomashek’s carved animals is about the size and color of a piece of candy.  Drawing on a love for living creatures, from zebras to kiwis to the sheep at his German homestead, he approaches each tiny carving with a distinct philosophy in hand—namely, that an item does not have to be conventionally practical to be worthwhile. 

Steve grew up in Winona, Minnesota, the youngest of seven kids in a household steeped in arts and crafts, including wood carving. He is a graduate of Indiana University, where he studied World History and earned a teaching certificate.

Encouraged by a coworker and guided by a course titled “Self Instruction in Art,” he took up whittling as a way of making peace with a fire that destroyed his family’s house, including a workshop full of his grandpa’s tools. After college and several years of practice, he quit a teaching job to pursue carving as a full-time career.

Steve Tomashek has earned his living from miniature woodcarving for over 25 years. Steve has worked through galleries, gift shops, and at art fairs, selling his carvings in both the U.S. and Germany. It was during his first trip to Germany in 2009 to see a Christmas market or “Weihnachtsmarkt” that he met his future wife. He moved there two years later and they got married. Since then, he’s also become a father and a farmer. Now with a talkative toddler and a barnyard of animals to care for, the changes have informed his work and moved his skills and interests toward convergence in the form of children’s stories featuring his own writing and illustrations.   

Steve’s work was featured in Woodcarving Illustrated Magazine and has just released his newest book, Scrap Wood Whittling: 19 Miniture Animal Projects with Character. 



19 Miniture Animal Projects with Character

The must-have guide for any woodcarver to whittle a menagerie of mini animals!

  • Approachable guide for carvers to learn how to whittle small, charming, and easy animal miniatures
  • 19 whittling projects with step-by-step instructions, coordinating photography, and full-size patterns
  • Complete overview on basic cuts, tools, materials, and other foundational skills
  • Progressive projects start at beginner level, then progress to intermediate and advanced
  • Expert guidance on techniques, decorative painting, display ideas, and more

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