I've never tried carving figurines before, so I might be able to do them. I do tend to suck with human figures though, my best have been Buddhas with a few wonky proportions.
As far as driftwood goes, it might be difficult. Personally I find it really hard carving something without a consistently dense wood, and driftwood tends to have soft and hard spots, along with very loose grain. I'm not saying it can't be done, since I've seen some truly magnificent driftwood carvings, I'm just saying I might not be able to.
But hey, I like experimenting, so all things miiiiiight be possible