CLOVIS, California. (KSEE) –A Clovis artist is putting the Central Valley in the spotlight, flaunting unique sculptures made out of recycled materials on national television. Blake McFarland’s creations have landed him in NBC’s Making It with Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman.
“I don’t think I would’ve ever imagined this, doing art for a living,” the retired professional baseball player confesses.
But after four years of ditching sports for artworks –many of which are featured at universities and stadiums –the Bay Area native is not complaining.
He’s now the epitome of “Another man’s trash, is another man’s treasure.”
“For someone to see a tire on the side of the road, instead of bringing that to the dump, ‘Hey! bring it to my house and I’ll turn it into a sculpture’,” he laughs.
The Clovis transplant works out of his garage, where old tires wait their turn to reincarnate into felines, warriors, mascots and athletes.
“All the threads depict different muscle textures and fur,” the 33-year-old says.
“Youtube is a great thing!”
But now he’s gone from searching tutorials online, to competing in Making It‘s third season for $100,000.
“It takes artists all over the country. There’s like interior designers, woodworkers, there’s sewing. It’s really cool to learn off each other.”
It’s still a competition, though, and that meant racing against the clock while creating his latest pieces in under three hours.
“And that one is not my specialty because, you know, all the sculptures and paintings I make take months to complete.”
The reaility show was shot last October in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic. McFarland says it was tough.
“We were kind of confined to our hotel rooms. With that said, we were tested every single day. We wore a mask and a face shield. The only time we had it off was when we were filming, and that was far and few in between.”
Shooting at Universal Studios in Los Angeles also meant being away from his toddler and wife back in Clovis for about a month.
“it was really difficult being away for that long.”
And while the sculptor couldn’t spill on whether or not he took home the prize money, he did have one message:
“You could really do anything you put your mind to.”
Making It premieres June 24th on NBC. It airs Thursdays at 8pm.