They say opposites attract, and this was certainly true with Chris Smith- an extrovert, and her husband Ken Smith- an introvert. But, their combined passion for all things creative has led to a life-long artistic collaboration. They have challenged and encouraged one another along the way, beginning with Chris gifting Ken a wood-turning lathe back in the 80’s. In turn, Ken presented Chris with a block of wood and her first carving tools. Their initial reaction was the same, “I can’t do this” and “Yes, you can. Just try.” From this, Whimsey Pudding was born.
“Whimsey” is aptly named as their creations come from their own whimsical imaginations. “Pudding” was derived because their art is a mixture of media- including wood, clay, blown glass, found art, gourds, and paint.
Ken’s pieces are warm and methodically made, while Chris’s pieces come from her love of children (she is a retired Children’s Minister) and all things childlike. Combining these two personalities, they create heirloom pieces that evoke smiles, giggles, and even tears when given to that special someone.
Woodworking remains a recurring medium for Whimsey Pudding, but found objects, clay, blown glass, and gourds also surface in many of their pieces as well. They are very conscious in their planning and create each project with great precision and detail. Each piece is thoughtfully and deliberately created to convey a special meaning and often times tell a life story.
Special Note about Chris: I had the privilege of serving with Chris while she was our Children’s Minister. Her family was always a bright, shining light for us. She and her husband, Ken, adopted five beautiful children and amazed me with their capacity to love. ~ Marsha
Here’s her story:
From the time I was a little girl, I’ve always loved and wanted children. At the age of five, I remember walking in to see my Dad and saying, “Daddy, when I grow up I want 24 children.” My dad laughed and said, “Chrissy, you need to go talk with your Mother.” I walked into the kitchen where she was cooking and told her what I had just told my dad. I remember the sheer look of horror on her face as she told me all the reasons I didn’t want 24 children. I went back to see my dad and he said, “Well, did you talk with your mother?” I said, “Yes, I want 12 children.” He smiled and sent me back to Mom. She continued to try to explain why I shouldn’t have 12 kids. This time, I went back to my Dad and promptly said, “Daddy when I grow up I AM going to have 6 children.” He chuckled and said, “Time will tell”. What I’ve come to realize and believe over the years is this desire and love for children has come from God. I believe He has a special plan for each one of us and His plan for me was to have lots of children, it just wasn’t in the way I thought. It was far beyond my wildest imagination. Little did I know that one day He would bless me with five beautiful children through adoption. Not only that, but He would bless me with children of different ethnicities, a living rainbow as a daily reminder of His love and redemption for me. He would also lead me to the life of a Children’s Minister, where I would have the privilege and blessing of being involved in the lives of hundreds of children. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s never underestimate God. His plan for our lives far exceeds anything we can ever imagine.