Saturday, March 21, 2015

cottonwood bark cottage

As many may know I am not the biggest fan of carving cottonwood bark. Partly because I carve in my living room with my carving apron and cottonwood can be a bit on the messy side. The other part is sometimes I am too aggressive with my cuts and with cottonwood that doesn't always work out well, nor does it work out well with other wood to be honest.

But probably at least a year ago I was given a piece of cottonwood that had already had some shaping done to be a pumpkin house. This house can be seen in Woodcarving Illustrated magazine issue #60.

Now as many may not know I am not a fan of Halloween, never have been never will be, so even though it is a cute carving I wasn't very motivated to carve a pumpkin house. But the other night I came across this magazine and got out the cottonwood bark piece and decided I would carve the house. I asked my youngest how he would like to see it carved and the vote was no on the pumpkin house. For me since I have never carved a house in cottonwood I figured I would rather do something with a bit of a change then to just carve a pumpkin face in the bark. So that is exactly what I did. I didn't read the article about carving a bark house as I didn't want to carve from the articles design.

I didn't get fancy with the carving, a round top front and side door with the front door being the larger of the two. I carved the side door indented a bit to make it look as if it was partially open. Basic shingles on the roof and a brick pattern on the chimney, hollowing out a portion of it for effect. I had considered hollowing out the chimney completely into the opening in the back but thought I better leave well enough alone for my first and possibly only one. I carved an oval window on the other side of the house and as you can see had a mishap and the window has no trim as to suggest the window pain, and yes in this instance I mean pain. I had cut the trim too narrow in the beginning and it broke so had to have a large open window. What I should have done is started with them a bit thicker and once I had gone through to the back shape them to the appropriate size and thickness. I should have considered drilling starter hole and then carving in the design.

Ironically I carved this house due to having a mishap with a piece of scrap wood I tried to utilize for my flip carving, I will post more on this next time. Always remember to be patient, work shaping then carving and everyone sooner or later has a piece destined for the kindling pile.

as always happy trails
Carpe diem 4 carving  
even when carving kindling

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