This husband and wife duo, Dewa Made Yadnya and Desak Nyoman Parwati, take pride not only in their craft but also the compound they live and work in. The attention to detail in the woodwork of their private temple is mirrored in the detail of their designs, creating a harmonious environment.
For nearly 19 years, Nyoman has worked to perfect the dangerously impressive art of glass blowing. He originally learned the trade from a skilled Japanese glass blower and took it upon himself to start his own business. Today, he is the leader of these men.
Meet Dharmayasa and Niluh Marsini. This husband and wife duo run their own wood carving workshop in the outskirts of Ubud among rice paddies. Here you will find a team of 8 carvers and painters who have been making their beautiful and unique hand crafted items for Earthbound Trading for the last 17 years. This long relationship has developed into a strong connection between us, our makers and our products.
Dharmayasa and Niluh Marsini
Niluh Marsini spent an entire year as an apprentice under expert wood artisans where she learned the impressive craft of wood burning. Watching Niluh Marsini in action is like witnessing an artist paint a masterpiece – except a bit more dangerous. She carefully wields her blow torch like the skilled pyrotechnic she is, creating spots on the giraffe and bringing it to life.
Wayan, a mother of two, has brought her contagious smile and infectious laugh to work everyday for the last 7 years. Working alongside her twin sister, she contributes to the carvings by painting small details of each animal, bringing it to life.
Through winding roads and lush greenery, we traveled to the artistic and spiritual Indonesian town of Ubud. Nestled in a serene rice field sits a bright yellow concrete studio with open windows. In the front of the studio is where Dharmayasa and his wife Niluh Marsini hone their wood carving craft. The back of their home is where they are able to pray and raise their family. The site was breathtaking. So calm and relaxing. We could chill here forever!
Upon our arrival, the generous family greeted us with an orange drink and traditional desserts. Hospitality and good vibes run freely on the island, a common thread in Indonesian culture.
Balinese are very humble and soft spoken. But it wasn’t long before our photographer Emily’s giggly personality warmed them up and broke them out of their shell. She has that kind of effect on people.
Did you know Indonesia is known as The Land of Smiles? The spirit of the island is infectious.
Inside the cool, breezy home, artisans gather on the floor with blankets and snacks, creating a comforting environment. The need for an afternoon munch while on the job is clearly universal.
The process begins with one of the most fast-growing trees in the world known as albesia. It takes only 2-3 years to grow 40ft tall and can be found all over Indonesia. Many artisans throughout Indonesia use this type of tree because of its abundance and ease to work with.
1. A carver sits on the floor in a diamond shape and uses his feet to move the block of wood as he quickly carves the giraffe from a block of albesia wood.
2. Niluh Marsini then uses a blowtorch for approximately 5 minutes to burn the spots onto the giraffe.
3. The giraffe is finished off with paint and stain to give it a natural look.
Explore the creations of the wood carvers HERE and find them at an Earthbound near you!
Emily Stoker is an editorial photographer and storyteller living in Dallas, Texas.
You can often find her hiking with her husband and two pups, making books by hand or playing the ukulele.
She recently traveled to Indonesia to meet the artists that hand make one of a kind pieces for Earthbound Trading Company.