Driftwood Fish #1: Bass almost completed

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Blog entry by piddlinchic posted 05-01-2014 06:35 PM 2301 reads 0 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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My first “real” carving and first time ever posting the process of a piece of work, so please just have patience with me :)

The fish began with a piece of driftwood I found in the creek behind my house. It already had a nice curve to it, was fairly solid and had a natural “mouth” which I immediately thought would make a pretty cool fish. (sorry I don’t have a pic of the driftwood before I began sanding it some, I just wanted to see what it looked like underneath the moss and dirt). After some cutting and sanding, the fish started to take shape. A good portion of the head was rotten and I had to add some wood from the scrap I had cut off, but thanks to Elmer’s wood glue, putty, and a lot of sanding, you can hardly tell.

The final picture is with it mostly painted. I still have to work on blending the colors because I just can’t get the look I am going for. I also have to do something with the eyes, but that will all be done in a week or so and I can post the completed project.

I would love some “friendly” advice or critique. Like I said, this is my first real carving and I know I have tons of room for improvement. The body turned out thinner than I would have liked and the fins are a little thick, but those are just things I will have to correct on my next project.

-- Learning by method of trial and error...right now, mostly error :)

19 comments so far

View sausageking1's profile


46 posts in 1542 days

#1 posted 05-01-2014 06:41 PM

Great vision….I often see pieces of driftwood when im outvfishing and think of the amazing carvings ive seen at different sales and shows…its an area of wood working I have no skill at all….but I can sure appreciate it when I see it. For a first time carving…you knocked it out of the park. Great job on the finish too . Keep em coming

-- "The difficult I can do right away. .....the impossible will take a little longer! "

View BlueBobbyD's profile


11 posts in 1611 days

#2 posted 05-01-2014 07:14 PM

Be patient ? That is amazing. I have seen worse come out of woodshops where the woodworker has much more experience than you, but as we can see experience doesn’t mean everything. The only thinkg I might do is make a plsce where the eye would go and place a marble like they would in taxedermy. Looks awesome though.

-- I'll think of a good one someday

View AnonymousRequest's profile


861 posts in 1603 days

#3 posted 05-01-2014 07:18 PM

Like sk1 said, great vision. I think your carving looks awesome and being your first real carving, it showcases your natural talent. Well done!

View mahdee's profile


3919 posts in 1821 days

#4 posted 05-01-2014 08:00 PM

Absolutely beautiful and excellent job on painting it too. I once caught a bass that looked like that.


View BigFoot Products Canada's profile

BigFoot Products Canada

711 posts in 3447 days

#5 posted 05-01-2014 08:41 PM

Awesome job!!! You are very talented.

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3388 days

#6 posted 05-01-2014 08:52 PM

Beautiful carving. My best advice to you would be for you to keep carving and posting your work for our enjoyment.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View piddlinchic's profile


14 posts in 1540 days

#7 posted 05-01-2014 10:36 PM

Thank you for the kind words. I never knew I would enjoy working with wood, but as most of you already know, it is a great stress reliever. I just think of it as my half hour of therapy each day.

-- Learning by method of trial and error...right now, mostly error :)

View Mean_Dean's profile


6667 posts in 3201 days

#8 posted 05-02-2014 12:24 AM

Well, your fish looks great!

And I’m the same way with my projects—I always think I should have done this, or shouldn’t have done that. But in the end, they always come out just fine.

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View NormG's profile


6202 posts in 3057 days

#9 posted 05-02-2014 01:43 AM

Fantastic piece, great idea for the fish due to the curve of the wood

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3243 posts in 3766 days

#10 posted 05-02-2014 05:49 AM

You obviously have great talent for carving! I would guess from my love of fishing (but lack of knowledge thereof) that it is a large-mouth bass . . . at least if I caught it, that’s what I would tell everyone it was! (It has to be at least 14” here in Wisconsin to keep it.)

To put the finishing touch on it, you can buy taxidermy eyes for virtually any fish or animal by species. (Just type taxidermy fish eyes in your search engine.) Can’t wait to see the finished fish!


-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View whitebeast88's profile


4128 posts in 2244 days

#11 posted 05-02-2014 07:23 PM

great job,very nice work.

-- Marty.Athens,AL

View harveysoriginals's profile


107 posts in 1540 days

#12 posted 05-02-2014 07:30 PM

That thing is REALLY cool! I definitely agree with others on here that you should continue doing work like that!

-- The most dangerous tool in my shop is the one I am currently using! Harvey

View BJODay's profile


526 posts in 1997 days

#13 posted 05-03-2014 12:57 AM

Great looking carving. Are you using a dremel tool? Chisels or knife?


View Woodknack's profile


12061 posts in 2434 days

#14 posted 05-03-2014 05:42 AM

Well I’m off to burn my first carving because I’m now too embarrassed to show it; and it was simply straight lines!

Really nice work on the bass. You definitely have talent.

-- Rick M,

View piddlinchic's profile


14 posts in 1540 days

#15 posted 05-03-2014 11:47 AM

BJODay, I did use a dremel and knife. I actually don’t have much when it comes to tools right now. Did the main cutting with a jig saw, heavier sanding with a random orbital sander, then used a box blade :) and dremel from there. I think the scales were the most time consuming part of the whole thing, used the dremel and worked on them for 20 min here and there…as much as my patience would allow.

And just to add to the “error” in my learning process, I ordered some eyes but got the wrong size :/.

-- Learning by method of trial and error...right now, mostly error :)

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