Corrine Ryan's Leather Madness is catching

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By Debra Lyon-Dye

Corrine Ryan, Cedar Keyhole's Artist of the Month, was 15 when she bought her Dad a leather drink holder at an art show. He loved it but more importantly looked at his daughter and said, "You can do this."

Corrine's Leather Madness began. She spent her allowance on leather tools, leather and art books. She didn't just stamp art; she carved or tooled it from original designs.

She then discovered she could paint and began creating portraits on her custom leather work. She is self-taught and has received Tandy Leather Factory's highest award for an intricate dragon design she created on leather.

The stages of "realistic carving" begin when she buys full cow hides from Ohio and then wets the leather so it has the right moisture content to take her impressions.

She draws a design on paper, transfers it to the leather with a first cut, and then tools details into the design. She then paints the image with acrylics and finishes with a sealer.

Her custom work includes framed portraits and original designs on belts, belt buckles, hand bags, wallets, photo albums, jewelry, and a wide variety of pet leashes and collars.

With over thirty years of experience Corrine credits leather artist Al Stohlman, her mentor and guide. In fact, her prize winning dragon is named Al in his honor.

Her hobby became a business when at the age of 26 she had her first son and decided that while staying at home, she would create a business. She also teaches leather classes in Jacksonville during the summer.

Corrine has been at the Cedar Keyhole for ten years and enjoys the challenge of custom leather work and does custom leather repairs also.

Bring any photo to Corrine and she can duplicate it with professional perfection and - a touch of Leather Madness.