A Lifetime’s Creativity on Display at CPHM!

Dec 3, 2021 | 2 comments

Card and Ornaments – The Hobby Horse Year 2012

If you know Tucker Wachsmuth (or Chester or Chet or Tuck — depending on how and since when), you are probably aware that he is always busy at this time of year.  It’s the holiday season and each year since he and Carol were married in 1970, he has spent these weeks before December 25th making their family Christmas card.

Each year, the theme differs.  Sometimes he depicts something that the family has recently enjoyed doing.  At other times, it’s an activity they’ve done together or, perhaps, centers on one of Tucker’s many interests — sailing, the wild creatures that visit their Oysterville place, or possibly a more seasonal theme such as gingerbread men or snow falling on the Oysterville Church.  Some themes are personal yet with universal appeal — Carol’s childhood teddy bear (which she still has) or, in 2012, their four grandchildren riding hobby horses.

Tucker’s 50th Christmas Card — Our House!

Tucker’s methods range from silkscreen to linoleum or wood block prints or rubbings, and even to cutouts using a template and X-Acto knife.  Backgrounds or finishing touches might be made with an airbrush or by using colored pencils or hand-painting specific details.  And, as if those techniques aren’t enough, Tucker says he sometimes has to design and make some of the behind-the-scenes equipment so that his silkscreen or other printing apparatus does exactly what he would like.

Frustrations along the way?  Of course, there are many.  The greatest, according to the artist, is to successfully execute an idea but then to be unable to find the paper that will fulfill his vision.  Perhaps not quite the right sheen or the blue being close but…

Tucker’s Cards on Display at Our House – 2017

Nevertheless, after half a century of Christmas cards, there is no doubt that Tucker’s degree in art has come to fruition — over and over again.  51 years of Christmas cards plus, in some cases, a Christmas ornament for each family member as accompaniment!  (Those, by the way, began as place holders at the large Christmas dinner that Carol did each year before she retired.  They soon served a dual purpose — an ornament for the Christmas tree, as well.)  “But I don’t make them every year,  says Tucker.

And the best news of all — Tucker’s cards are now on exhibit at the Columbia Heritage Museum!  The lobby is full of Christmas — all of it Tucker Wachsmuth’s Christmas Cards and accoutrements, the work of a lifetime!  Bravo, Tucker!  I urge everyone to go take a look.  It will get you in the Christmas spirit no matter what!!  And I guarantee it will make you wonder what he will come up with for Christmas 2021!

2 Comments

  1. Caroline Miller

    I have had the good fortune to be a recipient of these cards since the beginning. Each comes with a narrative about the image. I also own a few of his original art works. A gentleman of many gifts and talents. I feel privileged to know him and his wife, Carol. And I’m so happy to see this self-effacing artist receive some public recognition. Thanks for sharing the news.

    Reply
    • sydney

      And to think he “lamented” to me a few years ago that he hasn’t really “done” much with his art degree. I told him then (and maybe he finally sees it, himself) that his Christmas cards ARE a body of work — 50 years worth and counting!

      Reply

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