Our May watermelon carver interview is with Nan Dye, who was born in Thailand, but now lives in Knoxville, Tennessee. She’s a dental assistant, which means she’s good with her hands and a natural watermelon carver.
Nan’s carving in the 2014 Watermelon Carving Contest stood out because it was a beautiful rendition of the contest logo (that’s it below). She took home the second place prize in the “Most Elegant Carving” category and has big plans for this year, too.
Nan and I talked briefly recently about carvings and other watermelon topics, and here’s what she had to say:
TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF. WHEN YOU’RE NOT CARVING WATERMELON, WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO?
When I’m not carving, I love to spend time with my family. We often go hiking, kayaking, biking, and experiencing all of the beauty that Tennessee has to offer. I also love cooking Thai meals for my friends and family.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO START CARVING WATERMELON?
I love to see the positive reaction on people’s faces when they see my watermelon carvings. Their reactions inspire me to carve even more intricate and beautiful carvings.
WHAT SORT OF CARVINGS DO YOU LIKE TO CREATE?
I don’t have a specific type of carving that I prefer as I am inspired by all objects that I encounter each day. Since April showers bring May flowers, I find that I have been carving more flowers than usual.
WHAT’S BEEN YOUR MOST MEMORABLE WATERMELON CARVING?
My most memorable carving was one I did for Chef Aaron McCargo Jr., and was shown on CNN.
WHEN IT COMES TO EATING WATERMELON, DO YOU PREFER CHUNKS OR WEDGES?
While both chunks and wedges are great, I prefer to just cut the watermelon in half and dig in with a melon baller!
WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU AS A CARVER? WHAT WILL YOU BE CARVING THIS YEAR?
I plan to donate one carving per month to various retirement communities in my area. I also plan on winning the 2015 Watermelon carving contest!
UP NEXT: Making watermelon jelly