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"Carving a Tree Spirit"

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Blog series by mpounders updated 924 days ago 3 parts 22391 reads 19 comments total

Part 1: Face and Nose

929 days ago by mpounders | 8 comments »

I took up carving because I was so impressed with a wood spirit I saw at a craft show, and I still work on them, even though other subjects have caught my attentions. Tree spirits and greenmen have been part of folklore and traditions through many ages and cultures. I have carved them as wall hangings, spoons, canes, and free standing pieces out of primarily found wood of different species. This tutorial will start with a small piece suitable for a cane or staff, but the techniques apply to a...

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Part 2: Beard and Eyes

927 days ago by mpounders | 6 comments »

We left off with the mustache and lip sketched in. I use the knife to outline the mustache with a straight-up stop cut and then make angled cuts up to that cut, so that the mustache is higher than the beard. Then use the knife to round over the edges of the mustache. Draw the lower lip in again and then cut out a c-shaped section underneath. Make a deep shallow cut between the mustache and upper part of the lip. A shallow cut makes the mouth look slightly open, while a rounder shape gi...

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Part 3: Cottonwood Bark

924 days ago by mpounders | 5 comments »

First, you need some bark! You can buy cottonwood bark by the pound and get some really great wood, that is much thicker and wider than what I found in my neighborhood. Or, you may find your own, if you live further north than I do! Look for a tree with thick ragged bark, or the cotton-like flowers(?) when it blooms. Look for dry bark that has fallen off or a tree that is dead. I collected several garbage bags full from a tree that was struck by lightning. I washed mine and scrubbed with a ny...

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