His name is Ross Ward, yet he’s been referred to as Toronto’s Birdman.
“I started carving birds when I was about 14 or 15,” said Ward, a Toronto artist.
And since that time, Ward has carved at least 40,000 birds.
“I do it to pay the bills and because of my hearing loss, I’m physically not able to work in construction anymore. So I had to find another income,” he said.
Most days, weather permitting, Ward can be found sitting at the corner of Yonge and Elm streets in busy downtown Toronto carving, sanding and selling miniature birds, ducks, along with a few other things.
“I also carve fish and snakes,” said Ward. “Every morning after I have a coffee, I cut something out so I have something to work on. So from carving to finish, it takes less than an hour for a little bird.”
Carving away to help pay the bills but also because Ward loves to make people smile.
“I get people that even if they don’t buy something, they smile. How often do you see that in downtown Toronto?” he said.
Pieces of wood left over from constructions sites, mantels, or old wood piles are carved into intricate miniature birds all for $10.
“If I average $50 a day, then I’m doing well,” said Ward.