Saturday, August 30, 2008

Billy The Kid

This is a little carving I did off of that famous photo of Billy. The only change I made was to place his rifle in his hand instead of having him holding by the tip of the barrel with the butt on the ground. I like the way it turned out.
Here's an interesting piece of information on Billy that I always found's from Wikipedia:
"While Billy the Kid was right-handed, it was widely assumed in the 20th century that he was left handed. This belief stemmed from the fact that the only known photograph of Bonney, an undated ferrotype, shows him with a Model 1873 Winchester rifle in his right hand and a gun belt with a holster on his left side, where a left-handed person would typically wear a pistol. The belief became so entrenched that in 1958, a biographical film was made about Billy the Kid called The Left Handed Gun starring Paul Newman. Late in the 20th century, it was discovered that the familiar ferrotype was actually a reverse image. This version shows his Model 1873 Winchester with the loading port on the left side. All Model 1873s had the loading port on the right side, proving the image was reversed, and that he was, in fact, wearing his pistol on his right hip. Even though the image has been proven to be reversed, the idea of a left-handed Billy the Kid continues to widely circulate. Perhaps because many people heard both of these arguments and confused them, many hold the belief that Billy the Kid was ambidextrous. Many Billy the Kid sites describe him as such, and the idea of him being ambidextrous is still widely isdisputed."
I think it's fun to try and render a carving from old photos of real people.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Bound For Rendezvous!

Here is a really nice piece I did quite a few years ago. It was the first one where I experimented with making water so it was really a lot of fun figuring out just how to do it. The technique is really quite simple, especially in this case as the canoe is resting flat on the water. After the water base was cut and the canoe completed and painted and the edges of the blank whittled to look like rippling water I used a hot glue gun to build up the waves against the prowl and down along the sides of the canoe. Next I radiated strings of glue out from the front of the boat to look like waves would look if the boat was traveling forward. Next came the paint which was just acrylics. The last step was to brush on clear acrylic resin. It took a couple coats to get a really smooth surface free of bubbles.
A collector out in California has this one and I'm sure it's one of his favorites as it continues to be one of mine.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Piece From The Past

Here is a carving I did back in 1974 that I've always been proud of. You might recognize the pose if you're familiar with Frederic Remington's work. It's from an oil painting titled "Stampede by Lightening" which hangs at the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa. I did a copy of the painting back in 1974 and once I became interested in carving thought it would look great in 3D.

As you can see when comparing it to the actual painting I changed a few
things.....did away with the rain and added a lasso. He's mounted on a piece of redwood with a 1/4" steel rod. The figure is nothing to be real proud of but the horse and it's paint job is quite good, at least I think so.
There are no other photos in the Gallery section. Comments always welcome.

Tequila Sunrise - Finished

With the Grandkids back safely in Bahrain I was able to wrap this piece up this morning. I think he turned out pretty good. I was having a problem trying to settle on a name for the village sign until I looked up Tequila and saw that it is a village in Mexico. Just by chance we had a bottle of Jose Cuervo in the liquor cabinet so I spirited it off to the shop, taking a sip on the way to get the true feel of this fella's situation. If you're familiar with the Cuervo label you'll recognize it. Once the sign was painted I thought it wouldn't really look complete without a few bullet holes so I drill a few random shots and then used the burner to lightly outline each hole. Makes a nice little touch.
More photos in the Gallery and I left them large so you can really zoom in on that poor fella. As always, comments welcome.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Tequila Sunrise - Now For Some Paint!

Just how that poor fella can sleep with those two around is beyond me!!! You might remember these two smiling faces from my post some time back on making a paper manikin. Well....they're back! That's Hannah with an "H" on the left and Miriam with an "M" on the right.
I've posted some photos of the piece from all angles in the Gallery section. If you compare them to those in the first post you will note some subtle changes. His sombrero has been lowered a bit as I thought it was setting too high on his noggin. I've added the right arm and as it's hidden from view when looking at the carving from the front I didn't bother having the hand do anything but just relaxing on the stone. I made the base out of a piece of 2" red oak with gives the piece a little more authority than a thinner one. To me the base is what makes the carving....any carving into something above what you normally see. The stone is mounted by three 1/4" bolts epoxied into holes drilled into the stone and bolted on from beneath. I've also added spurs. The name of the town on the sign is still up in the air.
There are a few more photos in the Gallery and as always comments are welcome.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Tequila Sunrise

I've been having so much fun with the Mexican theme I thought I'd do one more but try a complete figure this time. I have done this little scene a couple times before but have always used a Cowboy as the character. While it's basically the same thing the addition of the sombrero completely changes the overall look. Also, instead of making the normal scenic base I thought the use of a material more closely associated with the southwest would be neat. Scrounging through my collection of rocks I fould the one he's setting on. It's a piece of Caprock from the Palo Duro canyon we picked up a few years ago while horseback riding in that beautiful place. The pole he's leaning against will be the sign on the outskirts of the town he just blew his months pay in. The hardwood base is just a scrap one I had laying around so it might change before the scene is finished.
There are a few more photos in the Gallery some of which show that I have yet to attach his right arm. This will give you another look at how I go about this part of constructing the figure. The area where the arm will attach has been sanded completely flat and as you can see there is a lot of gluing surfact to hold the piece coming.
I hope you like him and as always comments are welcome.