Friday, October 24, 2014

"You've Got To Be Kidding!"

Well, here it is.  This piece has been occupying my time for the past couple of months.  Not that it took me that long to complete.  Doing some of these projects gets me so involved with details that the entire project grinds to a halt while I try to figure out just how to do things.  I will say I think it turned out really well.  I wanted to convey the thought of a cowboy facing his assigned mount for the day.  It's clear from the title that his day is starting off on a bad note. thing about titles...I've noted that people passing our display or visiting the Gallery almost never look at the title of a piece.  To me that's a real shame as it's the title that explains the piece.  Sure, sometimes the action will do that but not always.  On my pieces and no doubt the pieces of others, that title conveys just what I or they were thinking as we created them.  So, the next time you pass a carving or sculpture you admire take a moment and read the nameplate to see exactly what the artist is trying to show and say.

This is a large piece, standing about 16" with the base.  I spent about as much time on the saddle as I did the figure as I wanted to get it right.  I have an old antique saddle in the Gallery which I brought over to use as a reference to ensure that all the details were correct.  There is one very small piece missing but I won't tell you what it is.  If you're familiar with saddles you can probably figure that one out.  Hopefully, you won't find another.  I made the cinch out of a piece of tupelo which I steamed and bent over the seat.  The rear cinch is made from leather as it was just too small to make from wood and stand up to the handling that it would face over time. looks good swinging free back there.  The cinch straps and ties are also leather as is the bridle and reins in his other hand.  The horses bit is made from copper and the lariat from twisted wire.

I spent a longer time painting on this piece as I wanted the colors to show a larger degree of wear.  I think the chaps are really a work unto themselves and I'm proud of the job I did there.  It might not show but there are lots of layers in the coloring. I wanted a red shirt but settled for a rusty color to dilute it enough so it wouldn't overpower the rest of the piece.  It balanced out just right.  Looking at the entire piece all the colors work well together and have a washed out look to them as if they've been worn for quite a while and still carry a little of the prairie dust.  Neat.

This will be my main piece at the upcoming show in Dayton.  I've ordered a rotating turntable which I hope gets here in time so the carving can be seen completely as the viewers pass by.  Hopefully, one of them will have a few extra greenbacks in their wallet and want to take it home.  Make that a lot of extra greenbacks!!

Lots of photos in the Gallery and I'm looking forward to your comments.


  1. This is one fantastic carving. From his body pose, to the expression on his face, to the fine details of the saddle accoutrements. If you enter this in the contest at Dayton your sure to come out a winner.

  2. It is again a real eye-catcher, full of detail, color, and artistry. This one will win as best caricature in the large category hands down, and probably one of the best of shows.....the turntable will really show hi off.

  3. Really nice job. I can only imagine how much work you put into this to get it just right! I am sure someone is going to display this proudly as it captures a moment in time. Nice to see all the special techniques and materials you used to complete this project. One can see years of experimenting.
    Nice job all together.
    Thanks for taking the time to share with us.


    Another ribbon winner for certain!

    Your art seems to stretch to new heights every time you post something new. Fantastic!

    The only thing I could find missing was a saddle blanket, but that's not exactly a part of a saddle...

    Congratulations Lynn!


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    1. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall watching you carve this one.... very nice.

  6. I thought I had posted on this one before but looks like I forgot. The amount of detail is incredible right down to the cinch on the saddle. Unbelievable. As always this will make someone an excellent treasure to own. Ginny

  7. Fantastic job as usual. It should go quickly at the show.

  8. Now you got me wanting to see that horse and how that all goes. A fine carving and it will be a treat to see it at Dayton. I had the privilege of seeing all the carvings at Dayton before they were judged last year and walked out knowing the judges had a chore to get through that. Winning is not easy when the field is deep and one never knows what will catch the judges eye. This is an outstanding carving and should do well. Now we wait to see who else has their A game on. Look forward to seeing you all at Dayton

  9. An absolute masterpiece Lynn , everything from every angle is simply stunning!! Colouring is perfect!! Good luck at the show, looking forward to hearing how you get on. Keep up the good work. Trev