Monday, October 16, 2017

corny carvings one and all


 Since the first ear of corn I have had fun with the idea and the design of these little guys. In the first image you can see the progression from the first to my most recent, front to back. I will not say this will be my last by any stretch of the imagination. I guess my Nebraska roots are showing through because between carving the little pumpkins or carving the ears of corn, I just seem to gravitate to the corn. Don't get me wrong the pumpkins are fun but the corn, yeah. It's funny how so many like the pumpkins but some have been confused by the ears of corn carvings, I just tell 'em it's a Nebraska thing.










as always, 
"Good Night and May God bless"

Thursday, September 28, 2017


video


So he is now painted and a finish has been applied. He turned out to be a fun piece hope you enjoy.


as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

corny carving doodle



Every so often we just get a thought in our head and we have to run with it, last night was one of those moments. He is a simple carving doodle done on a piece of 1" bass wood and is a whole 3" tall. Just a fun little carving a bit off of the path from what I normally carve this time of year. hope you enjoy a peek.










as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Friday, September 22, 2017

video
Happy Friday everyone, in case you haven't been given a reason to smile today maybe this will help.

as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Sunday, September 17, 2017

change is good, sometimes


A few things have changed lately; many have told me that my carving style has changed. The finish I put on my carvings has changed. So due to the first two, the way I paint will change as well to make sure I match up with the previously mentioned changes. This will really be more of a modification than a complete change, kind of a 2.0 version truth be told.


So then the question is how I do this, how do I test the way I will modify my painting process. If I was working with water color I would take out a scrap piece of water color paper and test it before I did it on an illustration. So that is what I will do here as well. So I took a corner block and carved in some facial features and once enough was there I painted the piece, applied a sealant and then applied the finish. Now I have an idea of how this modification will look on my newly carved ornaments. As a good friend and fellow wood carver Tony Harris always stresses to me, "test it on a scrap piece first, that way the disappointment won't be with a carving you invested time in".   

as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"




Thursday, September 14, 2017

carving time


Almost every night now I have done a carving and everyone has been an ornament thus far. This reminded me of last year when I talked with a carver at the Hickory show. While we were talking I told him I guess I need to work on carving full body characters and he asked me why. I said since I have a pattern book out with full body characters I should carve a few. His reply was that I illustrated them and unless I had a passion for carving full body characters he didn't see the point. After all even for those of us that sell our work, it still comes down to the time spent carving, so carve what makes you happy and the rest will take care of itself. Do I want to carve some full body characters yeah one day just not today.



as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Monday, September 11, 2017

it's getting to be that time

Ah yes, it is getting to be that time of the year just take a look in the stores. This being the case I have carved three more Santa ornaments. This year I will carve both bass wood ornaments as well as butternut ones. I am also working on a few new looks for my Santas and hope they will be well received. These three were carved after I took some time to strop my tools and get them ready to carve. Sometimes whether they need it or not (which they usually do) it helps me re-focus on my carving efforts, after all if the tools are sharp then "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings."

as always, 
"Good night and May God bless" 

Friday, September 8, 2017

inquiring minds want to know





So a few have wondered, what has he been up to lately, well this is some of it.

as always;

"Good night 
and 
May God bless"



Sunday, September 3, 2017

Gene Messer rebuilding fund

Calling all carvers, one of our own and a wonderful ambassador for wood carving, Gene Messer has been majorly impacted by hurricane Harvey. Please click on the link and read about what he has gone through and how you may help.

as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

out before Christmas (hopefully)

 "what is that smell, did I step in something"

That was the simple idea behind this cartoon, though many of my cartoons are drawn not from a punch line but just an observation. Truth be told the cartoon originated when I was highlighting something, this, a few years ago back in the late 90's when some markers still had the strong smell. Without hesitation my mind wondered how bad does it smell to him, and voila' the marker had taken on a life of its own now I just needed to put it on paper.





The other cartoon was simply a cigarette with an attitude, blowing smoke at you as if to deliberately fill the room. Or maybe he's just a cigarette from days gone by when they made you tough and you could smoke anywhere and it didn't shock anyone.


These are two samples of the kind of cartoons you will see in my upcoming book hopefully out before Christmas. It will be somewhat of an autobiography in pictures of sorts, going from simple pencil sketches to my new love, painting my cartoons with water color. It should be an easy read.



as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Saturday, July 22, 2017

two knives and a whole lot of paint


So recently I had been playing around with one of the designs out of my book. The first one I carved, shown on the right was too happy for the design so I put him off to the side and started a new one. This one's expression matched up more with the design so now I have two knives and both are ready to paint.


At this point I make the mistake of sowing both to my friend and fellow carve Tony Harris. He then suggest instead of me painting both the same why not paint one as a Helvie knife made with a Pakkawood. If you have ever seen these, they are a multi color handle so I wondered if I could even do this. I paint with extremely watered down color and the knives were carved in bass wood. Would the colors run or bleed together? So I took out a scrap piece of wood and did some test and unfortunately this was possible. When it was first painted it seemed to be missing something so I got out my pens and added some lines between the colors and then applied to finish. Every step I could hear Tony's voice, "test it first", and I did and it worked out just fine. Yet all the way through the process I kept wondering why did I do this and in the end I was glad I did.











as always, 
Good night and May God bless

Friday, July 7, 2017

TV having an influence

I was watching the Pittsburgh Pirates with my wife the other night, as we rarely get to see them on TV. I had decided to carve but had no plan in mind. This is how a lot of my carvings come to be. I get everything all set up all my knives out on the table, my gouges in the tool holder next to my chair, carving apron on. I store some butternut next to my chair in a container where once set up. I lay out a few and pick the one that will hopefully by the end of the night transform into a carving. Well this night I had no actual thought of what to carve and then staring at the telly watching the game I thought why not, this would be something different, and so I began.



 A pirate carved with the exception of a patch, watching the game and seeing the logo for the pirates and I didn't carve him a patch. I was trying to carve the actual logo but how did I forget that most pirates I know (not that I know many) wear and eye patch, but hey no stereo typing here. I don't know about the other carvers but many times I will look at a carving when he's done and pick him apart on what I could have/should have done, yet done he was.


Yet as most know my carvings aren't done till they are painted up. Lately I have changed the technique I use with painting and now the colors aren't as strong and the wood grain shows through even more than in the past. So here is my pirate, painted and awaiting a finish. This I have changed as well and it seems to give it a more natural look as before there was a bit of a shine to the carvings. The verdict is still out which I will use for my ornaments.



as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

it's a summer thing

Sorry I haven't been active posting here lately, been busy with so many things. here is a pictorial of what I have been up to since my last posting;

video


and a few more since these, I will get back into a rhythm shortly, hope everyone is having a wonderful summer to relax and be with the ones you love.



as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"

Thursday, June 8, 2017

pilot carving fini

So the carving is fini, painted finish applied cigarette lit. This one was a bit different for me as I love to paint so all my carvings get color applied. Yet from the other day I pondered should I leave some paint off and see how he might come out? My good friend Dwayne has always encouraged me to leave it without paint when carving butternut, to no avail. My wife has also said she likes the look of the wood carved without paint, to no avail. She always leaves the final verdict up to me as these represent me. Yet this one she once again said she thought he looked fine with minimal paint, so I applied just a bit more and here he is.

What do you think, butternut carvings, do you like them with more or less paint? 

as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"



Sunday, June 4, 2017

Pilot carving pt II



So as I was playing around with how I would paint the eyes I started pondering if he was a smoker and low and behold he was. Thought this guy looked like he was having a cigarette as he waited for the weather to clear so he could head out on his latest mission. So I have now carved and painted him a cigarette and then painted the eyes as these were a big piece of the puzzle to make this carving come together.

as always, 
"Good night and May God bless"