I have run into one of my most challenging learning situations since I have begun carving. Some background…..I take multiple angle photos of a subject when I carve in the round and print them up to keep at my workbench. Last week my client visited Virginia and I showed her the carving so far, and took some more pictures of Jasper’s ears as the folds are complex. Once I got them home and printed them off my printer the detail was not as clear as I wanted, so I decided to take them to staples on a memory stick and see what they could do. Well, they came out like photographs from a 35mm camera! Upon getting home and looking over the other pics I had from off my printer, I decided I could no longer use them, or my printer for reference work! Back to Staples, got all the other pics printed there, then back home. Now the lesson I learned, never rely on any reference but the best you can get, or how you think it should be! The new clear prints showed me so much more than the old ones that I found I need to rework some small areas….no big deal, just some extra hours. But I did find one major error on the back side of the ear where the complex folds take place, I removed too much material from the wrong place. While I am not happy, and my pride is stung, I have a great opportunity to advance my knowledge of craftsmanship beyond what I learned about reference. Going back to some basics that I learned from Chris Pye’s ‘Woodcarving Workshops’ I am going to (by the grace and will of God) fix the problem. I need to add a 2”x1.5”x.75” patch onto the back of Jasper’s ear. I have cut out the receiving surfaces already and have gotten them close to flat. I am using the edge of a machinists rule to find the high spots now and taking them down with a No.2 and No.1 gouge. Next I will match grain with some scrap from the original block, cut the patch shape, and carefully work to fit it to the cut out on the carving. Then I will use 220 and 600 grit sanding screen to get surfaces as close as possible. Lastly I will go over the surfaces with the 220 again to leave some tooth for the glue to work with, glue, and clamp. Prayers are welcome!
-- God bless, Michael, Roanoke VA.