"Un-Covering an Old Friend" --by RusticWoodArt

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Blog entry by frank posted 05-05-2007 01:12 PM 663 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Un-Covering an Old Friend

....and so it was in the now of ever,
that I heard your sigh of wishing endeavor,
till i knew the time had come for moments un-veiling,
as i stood before your monolithic scaling….

—-to your sleeping time of years gone by,
there is this awakening of joy-full cry,
and i am also jumping within the soul of your tree,
since won’t be long till we are art-fully free…

I love to tell stories, and story telling of old trees is what I am purposed for, so whenever I can….I get my story book out, and write again, pages that will soon be covered with the words of wood.

I cut this maple down some seven years ago, bleed with my friend and wept with this one as I put him to sleep. Trees are living cellular beings and this one had reached a point where the better of what to do, was sleep awhile and wait for the resurrection of a new day.

Two summers ago I started paying close attention to my friend and did a couple of test cuts to see what was in the wood. I still have some of those pieces which will eventually become shelving for some art-fully made piece of rustic ‘wood art’. And then last year I did another test cut and decided it was time to move him to a new location and start some rough carving, followed by roughing out some of his insides that were gone the way of punky. My tools I used last summer where timber slicks, debarkers, framing chisels and then I ended up with some gouges. The maple wood on the inside was so hard that at one point, I actually broke//split a large maple mallet which surprised me….I didn’t think that mallet would split since it had seasoned quite well.

Yesterday morning out in one of my wood lots, I decided it was time to un-cover my friend and let him start breathing and feeling the sun again. For about six years I had left him un-covered to sleep in the elements and then after the roughing out of last summer, I covered him up with black plastic, to start protecting and slowing down the drying process. I am well pleased at how the wood has aged and so for now I will let him start start weathering in the airyness of spring. We seem to be in for a period of dry weather so I will keep watch and continue to cover him back up as the need arises. I will eventually move this piece inside the barn soon….ha!....and that will be a feat since this one weighs some pounds.

....plenty of maple wood here, and I am excited about what there is in this piece….

....and so I will be doing some more roughing out, while the main and finish work here will probably be started in the fall or winter….

....the saw dust on top is used to keep the drying process slowed down somewhat, however I may now just turn this one loose and let him go….

....and yes, there seems to be a nice small burl here, which I have captured for imaging….

This one will be done in ‘free form’ sculpture which is becoming my favorite form of woodworking. I still do the rustic furniture, but my greatest form of ‘wood art’ is found in the area of ‘free forming’ and this piece will be very massive in size and weight, so there will also be much thought given to the marketing of such. As the piece continues to develop over the summer, I will occasionally post an update of what is coming forth here. Also if any should wonder as to name and final image of what is in the wood, well there is no name yet and I have not yet saw the final image….which becomes me to start sitting with this my friend and hearing what he has to say….

Thank you.

-- --frank, NH,

4 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 3578 days

#1 posted 05-05-2007 01:42 PM

Frank, do you have “the process” written down somewhere? How do you know “when” to do which step and why you do it, and.. and…

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View pierre's profile


76 posts in 3464 days

#2 posted 05-05-2007 02:15 PM

Hi Frank,

You are very good with words….not only a woodworker, but a poet….

I enjoy reading you.

have a good day


View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 3731 days

#3 posted 05-05-2007 09:46 PM

...not a bad photographer either.

View Karson's profile


35032 posts in 3817 days

#4 posted 05-05-2007 11:57 PM

The final picture of the burl seems to have a pair of eyes, a nose and a smiling mouth. He might just yell something out to you.

Or you could see another one that has a frowning, “Sad Sack” mouth.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

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