Thursday, October 29, 2009

Yet another display...

So tonight I took a break from carving to build Cheryl another display...this time a table. It's just a prototype at the moment, because we can not yet afford the good quality wood that Cheryl has her eye on. Then again it was helpful to have a rough first look at it before wasting expensive quality boards. At least we were looking for an improvement upon the Mall show we did last week. (GRRR!) Don't get me started on that show. Basically we at least want to make our display striking so it catches people's attention. Cheryl plans on painting it, but I'm not sure when or what color. At least it gave me something to do tonight.

To stain or to paint. That is the question.

Well I finished her up tonight. I debated for a while if I should just stain her and leave it at that, but the mottled color of the wood made her look deformed. I tried a darker stain but still was not satisfied, So I made the leap into paint. The flesh, hair and face were easy enough, but the body was a bit of a challenge. I still don't know if I'm satisfied with it, but I can aways repaint it. Cheryl suggested blue, but she ended up looking like wonder woman or a female version of the TICK! Then I toned it down with a greener glue and that seemed to work...for the moment. I really like the way the face turned out. And perhaps some day, I'll be able to display a full nude female in our front yard without any complaints from the neighbors. She looks like a ship mast head. One of the ultimate goals of my carving career would be to carve up one some day. Until then, I'll just keep practicing.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Eyes, Hair, And SANDING! YEAH!

Hey Hey! She's almost done! At least she's looking pretty good at the moment. I shouldn't say that because I see all of the flaws, but it has been almost a week since I dragged that log out of the woods, so I'm getting antsy to be finished. So tonight I started right in on the eyes and carved them out. Even thought I used the same sweep chisel for both eyes, one ALWAYS ends up slightly larger than the other. ( one of the flaws I was talking about.) However, Cheryl made the compliment "that at least she doesn't look cross-eyed this time." Thanks hon! Then I moved to the hair. This is always the fun part. I have found that it works best for me to start at the tips and work my way up to the top of the head. I used a small veiner for this one, but I have used v tools and various gouges to give a curled look to previous ones. I had to break out the dremel for the top of the head because of the rotted part. It shouldn't matter much since it is going to be outside anyway and the bad part will not be seen. Then came the sanding. Long laborious sanding. Every crack and crevasse. With three different grits The time just flew by before I knew it it was almost 6 hours later! But I did manage to make a big splash. I still might toy with it a bit more tomorrow, but I think I'll at least get started on the painting. Cheryl suggested that I put clothes on this one too since I plan on putting it out in the front yard and her mother is quite offended by nudity. Until then...Enjoy!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Ah! the Details

After sharpening up my chisels, I got back to work and started working on the fine details. You know, the kind of stuff where you spend 4-6 hours working on one little part to make it look just right. But then it doesn't look like you have accomplished much at all. Well, I do believe her face is coming along much better now. I'm quite happy that it is looking better from the side now. I also spent some time on her hands and arms. Thinning them out so they don't look so "man-ish". I would still like to make her hand smaller, but I think that at this moment, this size will have to do. I still have not figured out what I'm going to do with the eyes. I have been thinking strongly that they should be closed, but I'm not set on it. We'll post more tomorrow. Oh! Because I have not posted an Anime in a while. Cheryl and I watched Full Metal Panic the second raid all last night! Right now we are about 1/3 of the way through the first season. Here is the Openning. Enjoy!

Losing weight is hard...especially if you're made of wood.

For the last couple of days I've been shaping the figure to look a little less "voluptuous" so to say. Cheryl said that her hips were rather un-proportioned to the rest of her. I agreed. but shaving off an inch or two hear and there in uniform is rather tedious and time consuming. Here are the pics, but I'm afraid even I can't tell the difference much. However, her legs are looking a little more shapely, and her torso/abs are taking more form. I'll probably have to work on her collar bone once again to get it in line with the rest of her chest and chin. So basically, I'm reducing all the rest of her. Hopefully some dramatic changed ( good ones) will be happen and I can show them in the next post. Right now, I dropped one of my main chisels on the concrete floor and I need to get it resharpened.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Finally A Nose I'm Proud of!

Today I focused mostly on the face and hair. I was quite pleased with the way the nose turned out this time. Instead of making the nose in one stroke, I broke it up into a couple of stages and it seemed to turn out pretty good. For the first time ever, I was able to get a feminine nose on the first go 'round. The problem is that when I finally got the nose to look good from the front, I stood her up and turned her to the side and the same problem I had before came to light: Her face was flat! I tried to round it off a bit more around her cheeks a bit. Then I worked on her hair. The rotted heartwood that I had been trying to avoid, somehow managed to make an appearance, but I'm not too upset since it will be in a low visibility place with not much detail to get worried about. Tomorrow is out big show in Holland, so I probably will be wiped out afterwards and won't do much carving. Until then. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

When it comes to hands...I'm all thumbs!

So today is day 4 of the tree carving and each day gets me a little closer to the end. Today I worked mostly on the arms. I was relieved to find out that the center heartwood is not as rotted as the previous two log sculptures. In fact, it's down right carvable! So I decided to break out the chain saw to help me a bit with the upper part in removing a large chunk of waste wood. Then I started in on the arms. I wanted her to have one arm up while the other one holding her elbow. As if she is stretching. Then I got to the hands.... At first they were progressing smoothly, then I asked my wife to show me a fist with her dainty little mitts and ARRGGG! I was giving my sculpture MAN HANDS! ( it makes sense after all, I was using mine as the reference) Well, I messed with them to the point where they stopped looking like hands altogether, But I think I might have salvaged it a bit. It was all about the thumb being too big for the hand. Well, tomorrow, I plan on starting with the face. We are in the detail part of the carving now, so It will probably take a long time to do seemingly very little. I'll try to post the pics at decent intervals. Enjoy!


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