Where in your house, office, classroom, or workspace do you have a delicate piece of handcrafted art or even a functional piece for everyday purposes? Here is another small window decoration from old China. Solid wood. Carefully crafted. Pleasing to the eye. While I also enjoy the benefits of mass produced plastic and pot metal inexpensive everyday items, the demands of machine production strip away some of the individual character of hand-made products.
What part of this window piece do you enjoy? See other pieces in posts 166, 164, 150, 147, 143, 140, 139 and more. Shalom.
“From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward.” Prov 12:14
One of the enjoyable things about cottonwood bark is the excitement of creating interesting pieces. Part of the challenge is balancing the tension between keeping as much bark surface as possible while needing to cut it away for an image. Witness the practice caricature below.
How might you have done it differently? Shalom.
“An honest witness tells the truth, but a false witness tells lies.” Prov 12:17
My wife likes penguins. The pieces of cottonwood were too narrow for houses. Something had to be done. We tried more stylized penguins with clunky noses and pear-shaped bodies. Those were cute, I thought, but not well received.
So, penguins on ice. That was suggested by the bark. The whiter edges gave a hint of ice. Obviously not all the bark could be cut away. I am not sure why the overhang of ice, perhaps still to keep as much bark as possible.
“The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice.” Prov 12:15
Looking around on line. Re-discovered this online magazine. If you are not getting or can’t afford a subscription to a paper magazine, this may work for you.
“Fools show their annoyance at once, but the prudent overlook an insult.” Prov 12:16
Attached are pictures of two human faces in cottonwood bark. I love the freedom of carving in bark, the freedom to capture faces that belong to no one, yet are pleasing to everyone. You may notice, if you look through the posts found here,or on my Pinterest account (john Klompmaker), that there are very few sad, depressed, or snarling faces. Not because I don’t know how, but because I choose not to. Our world is filled with enough evil, enmity, envy and the like. My carvings need not add to the wicked or depressing side of things. So, enjoy the smiles below.
“Those who work their land will have abundant food, but those who chase fantasies have no sense.” Prov 12:11
Have you ever tried a piece of wood and thought, “Shoot, this is way too tough, can’t do this one. Well, that is what happened here. And why this piece sat in a box for ten year. And why I am not sure it even worked once it came out of the box. But someone thought it fit. It sits in a collection somewhere.
What I like about it is the center out. By that I mean, beginning at the checks at the center of the wood, we go from smoothest to roughest. I do not sand very much. This face called for it. So, sanded checks and nose, less sanding to brow, no sanding to lips, rougher texture to hair and beard, and finally out to the rough, even weathered edges.
The squinted, happy eyes made the piece for me. What do you think?
“Better to be a nobody and yet have a servant than pretend to be somebody and have no food.” Prov 12:9
I like cottonwood bark. Here is one sample that fits its piece of wood nicely. One feature that comes off well is the carved rocks at the base which then draw the eye into the uncarved bark that begins to to look rock-ish.
This piece would go best on a mantle or shelf where it could be turned so that the stairs and arches along the right side would show most. Which gets your attention more, rocks or stairs?
“Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but whoever hates correction is stupid.” Prov 12:1