Randolph County’s ‘Hugger Dave’ creates amazing carvings and beautiful tie-dye art

RANDOLPH COUNTY, N.C. -- He's known to most as "Hugger Dave."

"I hug, heart to heart," said Dave Luther, who picked up the name while going to Volkswagen bus rallies across the country. "Before then I've never been somewhere where everybody is so happy and mutually concerned about everyone, like a big family."

It was also at rallies like that where Luther got a reputation for his tie-dye art.

"I just really fell in love with it," he said. "Because you never know how it's going to be until you open it up."

When it snows he also does what is called snow dyeing. "As the snow melts you get all these various images of color."

But more recently Luther has discovered carving.

"I started making just beads and simple things like that," Luther said. He's since perfected his skills and made all kinds of intricate carvings out of shed deer antlers.

"It took 360 hours just to carve into the pieces [of this chess board] and shaping them," Luther said. "It took a year altogether to complete this."

And while some may find this tedious, he enjoys it.

"I love it, it's really like therapy, you can just sit out, don't really have anything on your mind," he said. "You are just kind of in to what you are doing and before you know it, the day's gone and you feel accomplished."

To check out his work visit Hugger Dave on Facebook at Rainbowerks or Instagram at @HuggerDave.