There are three factors (in my mind) in getting a completed carving. I know I might be breaking it down into too simple of terms but for now I am not only trying to improve upon my skills but also trying to form a process to my carving that will keep me consistent in my work. I have broken it down this way, basic carving; where you proceed from rough out to the basic form of a carving. This will be followed by the detailing process. This will be when you go into the details that make this character come through and stand out from other carvings that you have done. This will be followed by the painting process and I truly believe that this can be a make or break it time. Color can reduce a wonderful carving down to a cartoon like character. It can also diminish the idea that this was carved from wood if put on too heavy.
I have painted some of my cravings just to get into the process and to pick and choose what I do and don’t like from each, the main thing as I have said before is I don’t like it covering the wood completely so that it (for me) takes away from the wood itself. Isn’t this why we carve we love the wood, the look the smell and the feel of a carving made from wood? I have attached a picture that show a carving I have been playing with before some of the detailing work.
This one I was carving and the wood on the nose chipped away and I thought I was going to have to discard the carving. My youngest son told me he still thought it could look nice so I continued on with my efforts. See for yourself if he was right. I am in the process of painting him for my son, and will add those pictures shortly.