Monday, December 19, 2011

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year

Judy and I would like to wish you all a very blessed Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.   God bless you all.

Fireman – Part 6

With this video we map out the lower body.  I’ve decided to go with a 3/4 bust which will give us lots of opportunity for detail and once completed will result in an impressive piece of sculpture. 

I’ll give you the measurements of the body in the video but as part of this exercise it will be up to you to come up with your own pattern as that is part of the overall process of developing a character. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Fireman – Part 5

In this segment I explain the process of making the helmet. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Fireman – Part 4

With this segment we finish carving the head and take a look as what’s ahead with the helmet.  And I don’t care what some might say I’ll bet anything that there is a Fireman out there somewhere that puffs on a stogy while hosing down a flaming building! 

Friday, December 09, 2011

Fireman – Part 3

With the Kerosene Lantern project wrapped up we’re back to the Fireman and roughing out the head.

Making A Kerosene Lantern – Part 4

Kerosene Lantern

We wrap up this little project with this video and I’ll be the first to say that the little lantern we constructed looks pretty snazzy.  Hopefully, you’ll try and make your own version cause a little extra detail like this can really spark up your carvings. 

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Making A Kerosene Lantern - Part 1

I’ve received a number of requests to show how to create a Kerosene Lantern but have been hesitant to do so as most probably don’t have a wood lathe or access to one.   So, after a little experimentation I think I may have found a way that anyone with a band saw could turn out a lantern that might not be to scale but still looks pretty good.   It’s not a hard thing to do but does involve a number of steps and the tracking down of Plexiglas rod.   I get mine from a Plastics distributor in Tulsa that caters to sign shops.  If you live close to a large city you can probably find a listing in the Yellow Pages.  If not you can order it from a source on the net.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Fireman – Part 1


I want to thank you for all the really neat ideas and suggestions for the next video series.  I think I’ve got one that you’ll approve of and that will make one of the niftiest carvings we’ve done yet.  We’re going to do a bust of a Fireman.


My good friend Stan Hope up in South Dakota sent me a suggestion and a whole load of reference material on Fireman, both antique and modern.  This project will incorporate details from several different time periods.  I’ll use some details and equipment that might not exactly match up to the correct period but it will make a neat figure. 


Here the link to the material Stan has allowed us to use: 


There is enough here that will allow you to use something different if you want.  It’s all good and we owe our thanks to Stan for putting it all together.


So let’s get started!

Friday, December 02, 2011

Wall Drug Cowboy Band

Here is something you might find interesting.  This little plaster group of figures was purchased by my parents back in 1949 while we were all on a trip up to the Black Hills.  I'll bet they were even made in the USA!......something that would be unheard of nowadays.   At the Dayton show I mentioned them to my good friend Don Mertz  as since I met Don quite a few years back every time I look at these four guys I think of his carvings.
They stand about 6 inches tall.  I've included back and side views photos of them in the Gallery along with a close up of the faces.  Maybe you'd like to try your hand at making a set of your own.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Lizzie Bear Foot - Finished

With the visitors and the turkey just a fond memory, I was finally able to set down and finish Lizzie.  I think she turned out pretty well.  Certainly like the new fur texture over the old.  One little trick I tried this time was to put a small drop or dollop of epoxy on the hanging beads with really bring them to life over just paint alone.  You can see it in the close ups.
Still trying to come up with a new video project that will appeal to a wider audience maybe than just Cowboys & Indians.  Don't mind drifting off those subjects once in a while but don't like to stray too far.  Have gotten lots of requests for a Cowboy Santa but that subject has been way to overdone already.  Any suggestion?
Anyway, hope you like the lady and there are more photos in the Gallery.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Lizzie Bear Foot

As I mentioned earlier, while in Dayton I hoped to set down with Jim Willis to get some instruction on creating fur.  Here's a short video I made while Jim did all the work.  Sorry about all the noise in the background but the show was a big one with lots of people.   Also,  take a moment to visit Jim's website to see some excellent work.  He’s one of the best!  Here's that link: 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Dayton Artistry In Wood Show

Please don't go by the expression on my face about how I really feel about this award...the photo was taken while I was still recovering from the shock of receiving it!   What an honor.   You can bet that plaque will occupy the most prominent and highest place on my Gallery wall!  Wow!
We had a great show this year as did most who attended.  According to the hosts attendance was close to 3000 the first day and while it was down on Sunday it was still pretty crowded in there.  I managed to win a few ribbons and sell a few carvings but that little piece of wood I'm holding over there made the whole trip worthwhile.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Lizzie Bear Foot

Here is one I wanted to get finished but not painted before the Dayton show  so I could hopefully pick up some tips on making realistic fur.  Jim Willis will be there and he is one of the best at carving animals and has agreed to help me out.  Really looking forward to it as I think I need to improve in that area.
This piece is a little more realistic than my normal caricatures as I wanted to see what my normal carving techniques would look like when applied to that  type of figure.  I think she looks pretty good.  When finished she will have an Elks tooth decorated dress along with the beaded strips which haven't been burned yet.  She stands about 17 to 18 inches to the tip of her feather. Will also be quite a bit of painting and detail work on her so she should be a pretty striking figure.
There are a few more photos in the Gallery and your comments are welcome as always.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

A Cowboy Pony

Here is a pony I just wrapped up today.  After Dayton he's headed to Indiana to help herd any bovines in the area.  While I had a choice of the type of coloring to use I really like the coloring of a Buckskin so that's what he is.  Matt Dillon rode a Buckskin so he comes from a good lineage.
Hope you like him and your comments are appreciated.  More photos in the Gallery.

Muy Caliente - Photos

Finally received the nameplate so here are some photos of the figure.  There is one change that I added after they were taken and that is a gold earring.  I made it out of some heavy aluminum electrical wire and painted it gold.  Then drilled a matching hole in his left lobe and inserted and glued it.

The photos are in the gallery and your comments are always appreciated.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Running Buffalo

I this one might have to wait till the Dayton show but I wrapped him up this morning so will take him along to the OKC show.  He turned out pretty good.  I had my doubts for a while as I had originally planned on him holding a buffalo skull instead of a drum but that idea didn't work out.  Maybe next time.   I did try something new with the drum as I actually made a minature drum with a leather drum head and beater!  I remembered back to when while in  Boy Scouts we made some neckerchief slides out of a piece of thin leather stretched over a section of aluminum pipe.  I took that idea a little farther and used wood instead of the metal.  Just cut the outside diameter and then cut through that to cut the center out and then glued it together.  I wet the leather and then stretched it over the frame and tied it.  Worked out pretty good.  Once it dried it because pretty taunt.
Looking forward to the OKC show in hopes that there will be a wildlife carver there who can give me some tips on duplicating fur a little better than I did here.  While it looks okay I'm sure it could look better.
Anyway, hope you like him and there are more photos in the Gallery.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Muy Caliente - Wrapping Him Up!

Well, believe it or not, after almost 10 hours of videos we’ve come to the end of this project.  It certainly has been a challenging one at times but always fun and I think we ended up with a pretty clever and unique character which is what we always want and strive for.  I hope you enjoyed the trip and possibly even picked up a tip or two.  I know I learned a few things.   I’ll put some photos in the Gallery once the nameplate shows up and as always, we appreciate your comments.
Oh, I forgot one thing!  I have a right arm and a plate with chili, tamales and a couple of hot peppers left over.  So, as I don't have any plans on using them I'll give them free of charge to the first person to submit a comment on this post.  Maybe you can use them on your figure or use them as a guide.  Whatever, just drop me a comment and they're yours.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Muy Caliente - Part 21

We’re almost finished with the painting.  The only thing left now is to cook up some chili which we’ll do in the next one.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Muy Caliente - Part 20

Hey!!  We’re back on track.  The vest is fixed and the paint is flowing again.  Aside from a momentary interruption by the “Fickle Finger of Fate” we’re once again on the downhill stretch.   At least till the next goof!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Muy Caliente - Part 19

MAJOR SCREW-UP!  Judy was kind enough to point out a major mistake on this figure.  Thanks a lot Honey!  No really!  Thanks for catching this now before it was too late.  I’ve made lots of mistakes before but not one of this magnitude, at least not on video.  But, as I said when first posting these videos, any mistakes I make will be shown because just like most I too make some pretty good goofs and this is certainly one of those.  So, in the next one we’ll see if I can dig myself out.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Cotton-Eyed Joe

I've wanted to do this character for quite some time and I think this figure pretty well exhibits all the characteristics that I think make him interesting.  I think everyone familiar with him knows that he's come country yahoo but they might not know that being cotton-eyed also might mean that he has cataracts. Now no one would wish that condition on even a yahoo but it was and is a fact of life so we shouldn't ignore it.  It certainly doesn't seem to bother this bumpkin.
I lifted the neckerchief idea from a small bust of Festus I came across a while back.  I really liked the way it was draped across the shoulders instead of just hanging straight on the chest.  
Anyway, I hope you like him and look forward to your comments.  More photos in the Gallery.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Muy Caliente - Part 16

With this video we start to add some color to our Mexican.  I’ll only concentrate on the face as that seems to be what is most requested. 

The Top Hand

Just put the final touches on this one this morning.  He turned out really well.  I especially like the muted colors of the shirt and neckerchief.  The chaps look pretty worn too so he's evidently seen some time in the saddle.
Hope you like him.  There are more photos in the Gallery and your comments are always welcome.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 15

Now for some burning.  I’d didn’t do the whole figure but did hit all the areas so you can get an idea of how I go about it.   In the next segment we’ll start painting.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 14

At last!   With this one we finally wrap up the carving part of this project.  I don’t know about you but I sure am glad this part is behind me.  Next up is the painting and that will be fun to do. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 13

With this one we start the second try on the left arm and hand…this time holding a plate.  I think you will find this one quite easy to do compared to that mountain we had to climb with the bowl.  Hopefully, please God, Part 14 will be the end of the carving part of this series and we can start painting which I’m really looking forward to.  I’m going to try and have some fun filling that plate with some south-of-the-border cuisine of the hot variety.  See there…..not only are you hopefully picking up some carving tips but soon we’re going to be running competition with the Cooking Channel!!!  Ay  Carumba!

Graduation Day? I'd Say So!

 Glenn Landry was kind enough to send me a couple of photos of his carving "Dusty & Apples".  They were such great examples of carvings from someone who follows the Out West Woodcarving blog that I thought I would share them with you.   One thing I noticed right off is that he evidently got tired of waiting for me to show how to put a figure on a horse and decided to figure it out for himself.  I'd say he did an excellent job of it as that Cowboy looks like him and that cayuse have really "hooked up" as they say.
Nice work Glenn!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 12

ROADBLOCK!!!  Yep, we hit one.  As occasionally and sometimes always seems to happen when doing something from scratch you hit the wall.   This happened as I was carving the hand holding the bowl.  While I made it through the problem it took me about 3 hours to do it and could have been a complete video series on it’s own.  Well, I don’t want you to face this problem if I can help it so I will look for a different and easier way to accomplish this part of the project with basically the the same result.  

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 11

Forgot……I had one more.  This will take care of the right arm.  Now that was one mountain to climb but we made it will a lot of adjustments not to mention a dose of profanity!   At least the fella didn’t go sailing across the shop as some have!   Anway, we’ll start the left arm in the next one.

Muy Caliente! - Part 10

And, to wrap up today’s videos, here’s part 10.

Muy Caliente! Part 9

Here’s another one!

Muy Caliente! - Part 8

Doing a whole slew of videos today to get this project behind us. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Here's a new Chuckwagon Cook I just finished.  I had hoped he would be my entry for the over 15" category but he missed it by 1/4"!!  Going to have to speak to the Ranch Foreman about hiring  cooks that don't measure up!
Hope you like him and there are more photos in the Gallery.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 5

Here’s part five.  We start the main body so some heavy carving is ahead for us.   Have fun!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 4

We wrap up the head with this segment and I get a little preachy about my pupils!   Not you folks but about the way some paint their eyes.  If you’ve watched a lot of these videos you probably know by now that I have definite opinions about certain things.  Anyway, now I have make the hat and start figuring out the type of body we’re going to stick this head on. 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Muy Caliente! – Part 3

The addition of that piece of wood was a great success so now I can look forward to the next problem.  It’s things like this that add a little spice to your day.   The head is well on it’s way and we should be able to finish it up in the next segment. 


Oh, before you ask……No!  I wasn’t in the Air Force.  Our youngest son was though and retired a couple years ago.  It was the US Army for me as it was for our oldest boy. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 2

Well……Judy read me the riot act after filming this one.  Seems I was jerking that head around so much she was having a hard time following it.  I apologize and promise I will try to keep it in the frame but a guy has to see what he’s doing don’t he?


First, a special note!  You might want to wait till Part 3 is up before starting to whittle along with me on this one.  I was not satisfied with the cheek bump so I performed a little facial surgery to increase the material to allow for a larger bulge.  I’ll explain what I did in the next video. .  If it works great!  If it doesn’t I’ll be back to square one.  


One thing I noted when watching the video is that some might find it a little boring as I take off a chip or two then stop for a look then take off another chip or two then take another look and then continue on.  Well, that’s the creative process at work and I’m not going to edit it out as I think it’s important to see the entire  process from the smallest chip to the larger one. 


Monday, September 12, 2011

Muy Caliente! - Part 1

Quite a few of you have been asking when the next video series will start.  Well, here's the first part of one that should be a lot of fun.  I explain what I hope to do with this one in the video so I won't repeat that here.  Some of you will recognize certain parts of the upcoming figure but we'll put these parts together a different way to make this carving as unique as those others were.  So, go get a good piece of basswood and a sharp knife and let's have some fun.

The Dog Soldier

I spent most of Sunday and all this morning finishing this fella up.  All I can say is WOW!  He really turned out well and I'm sure will be one of the best examples of my efforts so far.
I'm not really sure just how many feathers are in his least 150.  I had originally placed about 130 and then noted a couple spaces hat could use some extras.  Of course everything was already glued in place and as those feathers are longer than the drill I had to make an extended drill to get into the narrow spaces.  I did this by using some brass brazing rod I had on hand.  I think it was about 1/16".  When inserting and anchoring them in place I was worried that regular carpenters glue would dry visible so I went to Lowes to get some of that dark carpenters glue.  Evidently they don't make it anymore but I did find a new transparent wood glue that, after running a little test found that it dried completely clear and  seemed just as strong as the other.  I just might permanently switch to that type for everything.
One thing I think will be necessary for this piece is a display case.  I had hoped to find a glass globe that would work but they were either to short or too tall but I did find a Plexiglas cube that should work so will go with that.  Even with that I'll have to come up with some way to anchor it inside the cube to keep it from sliding should the cube get bumped.
This has been a very satisfying project and one that should really be a hit in Dayton, at least I hope so.  There are more photos in the Gallery and as always, your comments are welcome and appreciated.

Friday, September 09, 2011

Cheyenne Dog Soldier - First Feathers In Place

I finished the shield and lance and have started with the feathers.  Could only due one roll before the guy started to frighten me so I'm taking a break!  I will say that this fella is really starting to look impressive.  Can't wait till all the feathers are in place and are painted black.  Wow!   Hope you like him so far cause I sure do.
More photos in the Gallery.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

A Couple of Carving Meeting Results.

Here are a couple heads I carved at our Tuesday carve-a-long.  As a rule, I don't normally work on a current project at these meetings as it's hard to concentrate and keep up with the conversations and joke telling.  I can, however, almost whip out a quick head study which will come in handy later on.  It also serves as a teaching aid for those wanting a little help.   I think the bottom one just might be "Cotton-eyed Joe", a character I've always wanted to do.  Not really sure where the top one is headed.  He's looking a little lost at the moment.

Cheyenne Dog Soldier - Just A Few More Details

Only have to flesh out the lance and shield and it will be time to start work on all those feathers.  Took me two days to paint this fella only to have most of it covered up by that necklace!  Oh well, I know it's all under there somewhere so that's whats important.
The tip of the lance is pounded copper with gives it the appearance of a flint spear point.  I will add some feathers to the top and bottom areas and also do some feather and hair decoration on the shield.  Not really sure if that shield design is one a Dog Soldier would use but I like it and once the detail is added it ought to look real snazzy.
So, after I finish my baloney sandwich it's back to the shop to pluck some feathers!    More photos in the gallery.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Cheyenne Dog Soldier - Almost Done

Spent the day finishing up the body, adding the braids and the claw necklace.  Also added the shield and lance and turned the base.    This is going to be one impressive carving even if I do say so myself.  I used a emery wheel to texture the fur on the necklace then burnt the edges where the wheel couldn't go.  Should be done with the carving tomorrow and then it's to the paint table.  Once it's painted and varnished the feather work will start.   There are a couple more photos in the Gallery.

Cheyenne Dog Soldier -Roughing It!

Spent a couple hours today making the lower body of this character and adding a few more details to his face.  The large collar will be a bear-claw necklace.  I've carved out one spot where a claw will go and you can see the pencil lines where the others will be.  I like to do it this way to get the open areas under the claws to be really clean and neat.  There are two beaded strips on his shirt along with the beaded neck piece.  I've been thinking of maybe trying some quill-work this time instead of the beading.  We'll see.  The next step will be adding the braids.  I want the figure to be complete and painted before the feathers show up as it will become quite unwieldy with all those sticking out everywhere.  

Saturday, September 03, 2011

The Road Agent - Finished

Well, here he is....getting ready to clean out the next Stage that happens by.   By the look of him I doubt if he'll have any trouble convincing the occupants to fork it over.
This has been a real blast to carve and the scarf turned out really well.  As I mentioned earlier I kept the colors as dark as possible to carry the mood of this nasty outlaw.  If you zoom in on his eyes I added a little red at the corners as he probably has trouble sleeping, worrying about some law dog hot on his trail or  maybe he just drinks a little too much Red- eye.
Anyway, I hope you like him and hope you'll stop by an check him out in person in Dayton.  Just make sure you keep your hand on your wallet!
Lots of photos in the Gallery and your comments are welcome as always.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Cheyenne Dog Soldier

I've always been fascinated by the headdress worn by Cheyenne Dog Soldiers.  So, with the confidence gained with the Road Agent I thought I just might be brave enough to give it a try as it should be a real challenge.   Setting in the shop literally waiting for paint to dry I roughed out the head for the figure......a photo of it is in the Gallery section.  At the moment it looks more realistic than caricature but that will probably change the more it progresses.  Will probably do it as a bust as I'd like to get it done before the Dayton show and I still have quite a few pieces in the works I'll need to get done.
The skull cap on the head will serve as a base for all those feathers which will be inserted individually.  I read where one headdress had a total of 400 feathers so this will be where the challenge comes in.  If it works it should really make an impressive piece.
I'll keep you posted with photos as this things takes shape.  The Road Agent is setting waiting for the varnish to dry so I hope to have him up on the Blog tomorrow.    As always your comments are welcomed and appreciated.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Road Agent - Carving Part Finished

Clearly, to me anyway, this is going to be one of the best I've completed so far.  I just hope the paint job turns out as well as the carving did.  I modified my original idea in how to do the scarf ad while it appears a little shiny now it will be a lot flatter once finished.
To make the scarf I had originally thought of using a nylon piece of cloth soaked with super glue.  But that glue sets much too fast to really allow any forming.  So I soaked the cloth in Mod Podge and  formed it using clothes pins.  Took several applications to get the exact shape I was after as I waned it to hang natural.  I think it looks pretty good and should even look better once it's locked in place.
I decided to go ahead and use the base I had on hand but I cut and added an additional piece to the bottom to make it more massive and stable.  He is held in place with a 3/8" dowel painted flat black.
So, he's not headed to the paint table to get some color.  Will use dark colors to maintain the sinister look.   Hope you like him so far and your comments are welcome as always.  More photos in the Gallery.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Road Agent

With the shower leak finally taken care of I've been able to get back down to the shop and get started roughing out this hombre.  I decided to do him as a bust as I thought the lower part of the figure wouldn't really add that much interest to the piece and also, busts seem to be in demand more than full figures at the moment.

With the base in the photo, which might not be the final one, he stands just about 15" tall.  As I've said before...larger figures draw more attention than smaller ones and I want mine to stand out and above any others they might have to compete with.  The next step will be the addition of the arms and the mask.  I'm going to try something new with the mask by making it out of  cloth  but treating it in such a way that it will be the most interesting part of this figure.  At least I hope so. I'm always on the lookout for new and interesting ways of doing things so if this idea works it has all kinds of possibilities and if it works out I'll tell you how I did it.

One thing I want to mention is that the video production unit will be on standby for a while while I try and get caught up in the shop.  There are a lot of empty spaces on the Out West Gallery shelves due to recent sales so if I want to have something to show at Dayton I have to get busy.  Also, I've decided to move the Sheepherder project off the burner for the time being.  Hopefully, I can get back to it in the not to distant future.  Naturally I'll keep you posted with photos and updates on the new figures I'm working on as they progress out of the shop and into the Gallery.

Anyway, I hope you like this new figure.  I think he'll definitely be a classic.  As always your comments are appreciated.   More photos in the Gallery section.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Done Gone Under - Finished!

Finally!  With all the projects going on around our spread at the moment I actually found the time to finish this little scene.  I think it turned out real well even if I did have to change a few of the original ideas I had back when I started.  Some always ask how long does something like the take to finish?  Well, I did the coffin about 4 years ago so it takes a while before some of these things finally take root and sprout.   There are a lot more photos in the Gallery and your comments are always welcome.
On a different but sort of associated note......A recent comment was received complaining about how I show some things but never seem to finish or get back to them.  A couple cases in point would be the WW2 head study and the recent Road Agent post.  Well, here's the way it is and the way it will continue to be:  I work at my own pace.  My interests wax and wane depending on a number of things.  Sometimes I'll see or think of  an idea that I will think will be a great carving then completely forget about it and move along with something else.  I've always wanted to do a piece with a soldier and I did that head just for a glimpse of what it might look like.  Maybe someday I'll get enthused about it again but not for a while.  The Road Agents head is setting partially done on my work bench but it too might have to wait while I hope to get started on the Sheepherders scene.  Would really like to get that one done before the Dayton show this year.    So, there you have it.  The purpose of this blog is to share with those of you who are interested in what I'm doing and what I might do.   No apologies...just trying to let you know how my creative process works. 

Now, back to that shower leak!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

We Haven't Forgotten You!

A number of you have ask why we've stopped posting.  Well, we've had a major house failure due to a leaky shower drain which has been keeping us occupied for the past week and will probably take another week at least to clear up.   We blame it all on having too much fun on vacation.  Please have patience ..... we promise to get back to carving and posting as soon as we can.  Thanks for your understanding.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Chuck's On Boys!

Finally got him all painted up.  Turned out quite well I think.  There are a whole bunch of photos in the gallery.  As always, your comments are welcome and appreciated.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Chuck's On Boys!

Here is a Chuckwagon cook I just finished.  He's holding that coffee pot we made earlier and also a new version of a kerosene lantern.  Still honing a method of making a lamp that I can share.  This one is pretty close...a couple more tweeks and I think I'll have it.  There are more photos in the gallery and your comments are welcome as always.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Rocky Mountain Highjinks

If you've been wondering why the absence of any posts for the past couple of weeks it's because we've been tearing up the Rockies with our oldest son and his family.   That's Judy setting back there in our Ranger.  We did as many trails around the Durango-Silverton-Ouray area as we could in a week.  Had an absolute blast and the 38 degree temp when going over the Cinnamon Pass would feel real good right now down here in the 104 degree Oklahoma summer.
- get back to some carving!

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

World War II Soldier

Here's the completed head of a figure I really look forward to doing someday.  I've always admired the Willie & Joe cartoons drawn by Bill Mauldin.  I remember my folks had a book of them and I was constantly wearing out the pages.  Not sure what this fella will be doing but I will try and put him in a situation that those other two characters always seemed to find themselves in.

Anyway, I hope you like him.

The Road Agent

I came across this book cover while surfing around the web and thought it would really make a great caricature carving.  I really like the shape of the mask as it gives a real sense of evil and danger.  I'll probably change a few things  but will stick to the pose shown.  What do you think?

Monday, July 04, 2011

Let’s Make A Coffee Pot – Part 3

Finishing up this project, we add some color to our coffee pot.  Hope you enjoyed this short project.  Now I have to come up with something else to pass along.


As always your comments are welcome.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Let’s Make A Coffee Pot – Part 2

With this segment we finish up the carving and attach the handle and other details.  Next stop….the paint table.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Let's Make A Coffee Pot- Part 1

I'm in the midst of doing another Chuckwagon Cook and being as I've already covered the Cook I thought doing a few videos concentrating on some of the associated details might be a good idea.  So, here is how I go about making a Chuckwagon Coffee Pot.  It's not a hard thing to make but getting it right is something we want to do so our cook has the right equipment to turn out a good cup of Joe!  And you certainly can'd do a Chuckwagon Cook without a coffee pot in there somewhere.   Here's the video:
The photo to the Cook on the left is one I did quite a few years ago. I can't make out the date which is a good reminder to make sure your photos capture those important facts.  He's got his coffee made, cups in hand, and is waiting for the boys to crawl out of their bedrolls and stumble over for a cup of wake-up.  As Arbuckles coffee was the brand any good cook would choose I included a case of it and a opened package on top.  The cups are tin.  Overall a pretty neat little scene.
I hope you can follow along and carve one of your own and comments are welcome as always.  Here's the video link:

Friday, June 24, 2011

Look What Flew In!

Carved these two guys this morning as I continue to flesh out the burial scene.  Can't wait to get them painted as they really add a lot to the theme of the piece.  The tree is a piece of cedar I clipped off a dead tree yesterday and ran it through a steel brush and the flap sander.  I'll stain and paint it later.  Cedar is great for things like this as it doesn't rot like other found wood.  Haven't decided what to put on the smaller sign but I've good some good ideas.

Some more photos in the Gallery and your comments are welcome as always.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Carving a Cowboy On His Horse - The Inner Leg Details

A number of you have asked me when am I ever going to finish the Cowboy on the Horse project.  Well, to be honest I really can't tell you as I have so many other things going on a the moment.  So, to help you out as much as I can here are some photos of the inside of a cowboys legs while setting on a horse.  Anything above the carved area will be hidden when the cowboy is placed in the saddle.  If you check the album The Range Rider you can see how this looks when he's in place. Once the legs are done I then carve the upper part of the body.
When fitting the body to the saddle you will no doubt also have to remove material from the saddle.  The important thing is that the body should fit into the saddle naturally so it looks like a single piece.
Hope this helps you out.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Done Gone Under

Here's an early look at a scene I'm working on.  Started it early last year and you may have seen in setting on the table during some of the videos.  I made the base first as I wanted to see just how it would look as a platform for the figures.  The hole goes down through all three levels and will be textured to match the upper area when done.  I plan on having two additional figures in the hole shoveling and they will be only partially be seen.  Of course there will be lots of little details laying around.  The base is about 18" wide to give you some scale of it's size.
The little poem is one of my own and while it doesn't really explain what his neck was stretched for it's clear that whatever it was he won't be doing it again.
I hope to have this one done by the Dayton show.  As always your comments are welcome and there are a few more photos in the Gallery.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Viking Warrior

I painted the flag design this morning and put everything together so here he is, ready to jump in his ship and go off to rape and pillage somewhere.  Sure hope it's not around here.
This has really been a fun project but I'm glad it's over.  Doing these carvings via the video process really stretches out the production time of a piece and by the time it's half done I'm just about ready to move on to something else.  But I know you folks like those videos so we'll keep them coming.   I've already got an idea for the next series which should be even more interesting and a lot more challenging.
The symbol on the flag is one I found on the web and I think it really rounds out the character.  Once everything was mounted I gave him and the flag a quick shot of Dul-Coat to even everything up.
So, if you're making your own version I hope you share it with the rest of us.  Maybe we can put them all together and go over and attack that WCI forum and create a little havoc.   Again, your comments are welcome and appreciated.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Viking Warrior – Part 10

With this segment we wrap up the project except for the final flag design, the finishing varnish and mounting him solidly on his base.  Personally, I think he turned out great and will make an impressive little character for someone’s display shelf.   If you’re carving your own version I hope you had as much fun doing it as I have. 


As always your comments and opinions are appreciated. 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Viking Warrior – Part 8

In this one we paint the tunic, the chainmail, the leggings and boots.   He’s starting to look pretty snappy. 

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Viking Warrior – Part 7

Believe it or not we’re finally finished with the carving part.  In this segment we wrap up that part of this project and get ready to move into the painting phase.  A couple more posts and this little figure can go set on the display stand.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Viking Warrior – Part 5

Slowly but surely we’re getting there.  With this segment the body is just about complete. 

Monday, June 06, 2011

Viking Warrior – Part 4

He’s really starting to take shape with this segment.  I kind of fleshed him out outside the video but most of what I did has already been covered in previous projects so I felt I didn’t need to repeat those steps here.   I placed my patterns for the arms and sword in the Gallery album.  Just remember there is a lot of extra wood to the arms to play with. 

Friday, June 03, 2011

Monday, May 30, 2011

Viking Warrior – Part 2

I have placed the associated drawings in the Picasa Gallery.  My figure is cut from a 4” block and measures 7” tall.