This is my 200th post. That should be something special. The picture below combines two of my favorite hobbies. One is obviously wood carving. The other is reading. What better thing to carve than books. (By the way, I just finished an excellent and informative book entitled, “China’s Examination Hell.”)
The books are carved from several different types of wood – white pine, basswood, and cedar. I enjoy trying to create pieces that look like old, leather-bound, well-loved books. Most are in private collections in Michigan.
Some day I may find time to tell you about other hobbies I have – learning foreign languages, collecting sand samples, drawing, propagating succulents. What hobbies do you have?
“A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.” Prov 15:13
Always looking for different ways to s one is interesting too. There is much to learn about carving in es, special tools, corrections and goof recovery among them. Have you tried it?
“A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense. Prov 19:11
Alex Queral http://www.projectsgallery.com/Queral.htm
One thing that attract me to wood carving is trees. Now that might sound to obvious, but trees – their shape (both positive and negative), color, smell, bark, leaves, sound, feel, climb-ability – are a big part of carving for me. That is why I recommend wood carvers have a few books on trees and wood around.
One book worth having is “The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Trees.” This field guide is filled with many interesting facts, wonderful color plates and much information useful to a wood carver. Its introduction tells us that there are over 50,000 species of trees in the world. Only 680 of them are native to America. Wood carvers are always looking
for different wood to carve. Good, basic wood types – bass, butternut, sugar pine, white pine, birch, walnut, oak. But just this one fact about s pieces opens up worlds of possibility for the carver. So many kinds of wood to try, so little time.
The color plates of tree bark and leaves are also useful. Audubon divided the plates into groups by leaf shape and structure. Further subdivisions by tree types allows the reader to quickly find a type of tree of interest. Tree identification is aided by the plates provided. Cottonwood bark carvers become much more aware of tree bark, its beauty, and variety.
One other feature that a carver may find useful is the section giving tree descriptions, habitat, and range. Carvers looking for different kinds of wood, assuming they are a bit more adventurous and aren’t just going down to the local lumber yard, will know where the tree of interest can be most easily found.
Audubon’s Field Guide for North American Tree is a valuable and interesting tool for any wood carver.
It is wood. Well, at least it began as wood. I know, it isn’t in the traditional form, but wonderfully carved none the less. I have shown other book carvers, but these are really fun. Have you seen Petras? Guy has done a masterful job of giving us the feeling of the place.
The rest of these book carvings are also eye appealing. One reminds me of a Pueblo of Southwestern USA. Another has to be named Pagoda. Not sure if I see it correctly, but one looks like it has a grave at the top – are those flowers? What do you think? Another I call “Oriental Mountain.” It reminds me of scenes from China. The final one, which also looks oriental, I have named “Overunder.” It has a great feel to it.
CARVING TIP: You will notice the good lighting that the photographer used when taking these pictures. A good tip for wood carvers. I am trying to learn the ropes of lighting. One site I read mentioned setting up a photo area. Have the camera, lights, materials and any thing else needed for photographing ready in one place. Then, when you have a carving ready, it is but a moment to take a few shots and you have something to post.
I consider looseness with words no less of a defect than looseness of the bowels. —John Calvin
So, what’s in a book? One might answer: words, information, ideas, homework, images, love, adventure, wisdom, art. All of the aforementioned are true. A further question, what do you mean by art? You play the game: pictures, images, ideas about art – how to do, how to improve, how to buy or sell art, how to critique art, how to display art. Again, all of these are good ideas. One last question, what do books, recycling wood, and carving have to do with each other?
Humor me: books are made out of paper –> paper is made out of wood –> therefore, if you make art objects, real art, not just talk about art, out of books you have achieved status of recycling wood through carving thereby creating art. And your pieces fit this blog perfectly. And even if they didn’t fit all those categories, they are great pieces of carving.
Now check out what Brian Dettmer has accomplished with books!
“Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law(Bible).” Psalm 119:18