Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Following are some sites I found that explain some of the meanings associated with artistic imagery:
Monday, October 20, 2008
Paul Wellborn showing some very nice carving.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
Here are some of the devices that I use to secure wood while carving. First up is the end-mounted bench vise. A bench vise like this one is very useful for either directly clamping your work or for holding other clamping devices. Note the wooden jaw plates attached to this vise to prevent the metal jaws from marring the work.
Another device that can be used to attach carving to the knee is a piece of plywood with a carriage run through a counter sunk hole. the platform is then screwed to the carving.
This device is also clamped onto the knee using a threaded handle. This works particularly well with smaller carvings since you can use smaller screws and still get a good hold on the carving. Both of these devices used in conjunction with a carving knee give a tremendous range of angles to work with and are easy to adjust.
For relief carvings, I especially like an adjustable stand like the one above. It proves a good work surface with two handles to clamp the work and will tilt to any angle from horizontal to vertical. I came by this one around 20 years ago. I have not been able to find another like it. If you know of a good source for adjustable stands like this, please let me know.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Back at the regular workbench the carving is completed and the lettering is burned in.
The carving will be finished with a water based Minwax stain. First a pre-stain is applied.
After the pre-stain has dried for about 15 minutes, an "English Oak" colored stain is applied.
The stain is allowed to dry over night and then the piece is finished with a coat of Minwax Polycrylic. This will give it a nice hard finish with a nice sheen. I often like to finish with a coat of wax, but since this is intended to go between the pages of a book, I thought it best to forgo the wax.
And there you have it. The lighting in the photographs could be better, but I hope you get the idea.
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Some other images that may be interesting can be found at:
Sunday, July 6, 2008
Monday, June 9, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Here is Doug Oliver with a piece he is working on. You can see more of his work at http://www.texaswoodcarver.com/.
Monday, May 5, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
Friday, April 25, 2008
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
I have used leather stamps on several carvings. It's hard to see in this picture, but the backgrounds in this carving are stamped with a leather working tool.
I use a teardrop shaped, cross-hatch stamp the most. Some stamps will not work very well - especially those with much detail. The stamps work by crushing and tearing the wood fibers. The torn wood fibers will remain torn, but the crushed ones will (to some degree) return to their original form. Therefore, stamps are best used for creating texture, but not for detail. Creating texture will also add color since it will reflect light and take finish differently.
Monday, April 21, 2008
The brands that I have used and found to be of good quality are Pfeil "Swiss Made", Ashley Iles, Stubai and Dastra.
Flexcut also make a good line of tools. They have full sized tools that are usually a little less expensive than the other brands listed above. Due to their design, I'm not sure you will get quite as long a useful tool life out of the Flexcut as the others. Before you think I have anything against Flexcut, consider that I measure tool life in decades. You can get a lot of good use out of Flexcut tools.
Flexcut also makes some carving tool sets that have interchangeable handles. Changing handles can be a pain for extended carving sessions at your workbench, but they can be great for a compact travel kit.
Having said all that, I primarily use a variety of Pfeil, Ashley Iles and Dastra full size tools. I also have a set of Flexcut interchangeable tools for when I need to travel light.