DearValleyLeather, Art & Photo is a name I chose, because Chilhowie Virginia the town where I was born, got its name from a word Native Americans called it meaning
" The Valley Of Many Deer "
Likewise, My Family, Friends and the People I've come to know there, are
" Dear to My Heart ! "
If you notice, I like to use as a background for my work, Old Barnwood
Railed Fences, Trees etc. that have weathered many storms, and still possess a Unique and Lasting Beauty.
Creating such things that not only withstand the test of time, but God willing provide you
" A Lifetime of Service "
Gives me great satisfaction and perhaps one day might become a family treasure to pass on to future generations.
Hand-crafted Leather, Belts, Message & Shoulder Bags. Briefcases etc.
Handcrafted in view of the Majestic Whitetop Mountain, a place of Beauty and Inspiration, Rich in History, Culture and Tradition.
The Appalachian Trail, which begins in Georgia and continues to Maine runs across Whitetop.
In 1974 while displaying his artwork at an arts and crafts show at Fort Lee, Virginia, William met a man by the name of Willie Hall, who introduced him to the world of leather-work, thus was the beginning of Dear Valley Leather, derived from his hometown Chilhowie,Va. which was named after a word Native Americans used to refer to it meaning “ Valley of Many Deer.”
All stitching is done by hand, utilizing a technique called Saddle Stitching, which gives each finished project added Strength and Character, Designed to give " A Lifetime of Service " Created to be “ Dear To Your Heart ! ”
Small scars sometime visible in the leather, are exactly that an unavoidable record of the history of the hide, which makes each Leather Project Unique .
My Artwork is based on People, Places and Things that have happened in my life, both my Art & Leatherwork like myself, is a ( Work In Progress ) and I strive to improve each day, not only myself, but all that I do.
" One Day At A Time! "
In 2017, I was asked by Jack Hinshelwood, Executive Director of The Crooked Road, to create a painting to be used as the Cover for the 2018 Mountains of Music Homecoming Program Guide.
The theme " In The Key Of Blue " I chose to create a painting based on my memory of the " The Sue/ King Inn " which was once located in Bristol Virginia, that provided entertainment, food and lodging, and was operated by a husband and wife team of our extended family members, affectionately known to us as ( Aunt Sue and Uncle King )
Copies of the 2018 Mountains of Music Homecoming Program Guide are still available upon request at the Crooked Road located in the Southwest Virginia Cultural Center and Marketplace.