Monday, September 30, 2013

Aother carving

Well I finished another carving and I really like the facial expression on this one. I am making an effort to change up the facial expressions and facial hair on each carving. I will do some elf type characters and then carve some Santa type characters after that. I will not only focused on the areas mentioned but also on my basic carving techniques. In previous carvings I have utilized my Denny Ortel V-tool for different areas, like where the hair outlines the face. I have been recently started doing this area with stop cuts, I know it's kinda like going backwards in my technique but I don't want to get to the point where I can't do everything with a knife, so this will be the game plan for the foreseeable future.

One thing I struggle with in this area is keeping clean cuts and no burring or lines. You know the lines I am talking about when you cut too deep into the stop cut and there is a cut line. You are going to get a certain amount of these but keeping it to an extreme minimal is my goal. At least I have another carving done and awaiting painting. This will make it interesting as well since usually I carve, paint and move on to my next carving. Now I will carve, carve and carve some more, then paint a bunch all at one time. Maybe this will strengthen my painting technique as well, we can only hope.

Carpe diem carving

Saturday, September 28, 2013

two more carvings

Well I have gotten two more carvings done, an elf and a Santa carving. I have tried to change things up with the carvings as these will be for a church bizarre in November and don't want everything exactly the same. So I have been playing around with different things in my carvings. I will do the same when I paint them as well. I have included a picture of the three together so you can see I am also playing around with the different sizes and lengths. These carvings are good since October almost here, you need to understand one thing I hate Halloween. This being true my mind begins to look forward to Christmas, the movies, cartoons and the songs of the holiday. I love the truth of the holiday and the birth of my Savior but I also love everything else that is part and parcel of the holiday. Let me let you in on a little secret, you can do both. It is my belief that we should stop being such sticks in the mud. Why can't we celebrate the holidays and the glory of the gospel. I have heard people say we can either enjoy the fun of the holiday or we can understand the truth of the gospel, wow, that sounds wrong, doesn't it?

 Ecclesiastes 3:1 To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:

Maybe I am reading this wrong but to me it sounds like you can enjoy the Grinch and the first Christmas, where unto us a child was born. I pray someday we will understand that we should have enough heart in us to do both.  

Carpe diem carving

Friday, September 20, 2013

Christmas elf

I recently worked on a carving from a Mark Gargac video. He has very nice videos, clear scenes easy to follow. I have seen many videos where the lighting is off and the color of the wood sometimes blurs which makes it hard to see what the carver is talking about or how they are carving. I know I have sharpened my skills studying from those who have carved longer and more consistently than I and am always looking to see who I can learn from next. I have found that when I take the time to study a carvers video I often learn more from these than magazine articles.

So the elf, still needs painting but overall am happy with the outcome. I changed the design a bit from his just to make it more my design and his technique. He in this video uses a lot of stop cuts, probably for those who are limited in tools. I am not always consistent with stop cuts, an area I need improvement. So here he is the Christmas elf.

 I plan on painting a portion of him but will leave some wood unpainted as I have become fond of the effect it gives to my carvings. I will paint the beard and the hat and maybe add a small dash of color to the face but more on this later.

Carpe Diem carving  

Friday, September 6, 2013

comfort birds

I was given two rough-outs for comfort birds so the other day I thought I would give it a try. I thought about using my carving tools but decided to use the old dremel tool instead. I did this remembering an article in one of the carving magazines on power carving a cardinal so went with the power tool instead. For my first two thought they came out o.k., I tried to be conscious of how they would feel in someones hand more than on the design of the bird itself, after all that is the purpose of the carving. Unfortunately I was also motivated to carve these as we have had friends who have recently lost loved ones and both will be given out in hopes that they do indeed bring comfort to those in need.

In an attempt to end this posting on a lighter note I have posted pictures of the cedar tree I got from a neighbor who had cut it down and had it out for the city to pick up. I have in the past cut branches off of our cedar tree and they dry out fairly well without a whole lot of cracking so figured I would clean this up and store it to see if it can be harvested for a future carving. I will clean off some of the protruding branches and then store it for a time before beginning to shape it to see what I have to work with. When I think of the wide variety of trees and plants created I realize God used used the whole canvas for his painting, may we do the same as we go through this life.  

Carpe diem carving