|Project by Eric M. Saperstein||posted 07-05-2009 07:39 AM||1599 views||2 times favorited||8 comments|
When the time comes to commemorate your passions there are a variety of ways to immortalize them into an heirloom. Some commission a portrait, many take photographs, a few write songs or keep journals and almost everyone tells stories. Braking for the norm, consider a masterpiece in wood.
This “Safari Chest”, a solid cherry chest features elk, black bear and whitetail deer hand carved in relief with carefully burned detail and acrylic coloration. When you return from a hunt, dock after a voyage at sea, land on native soil after a journey abroad, or just simply like woodworking, a personal hand carved chest featuring your favorite themes will always welcome you home.
The carving patterns are composites created from Lora S. Irish (www.carvingpatterns.com) designs – we frequently use her creatures, trees, and other features in our layouts. A woodcarver is only as good as the pattern they start with, and Lora is one of the best pattern artists for wildlife and landscape designs. This is posted as a tip to all carvings – never feel restricted to one pattern, one artist, one theme! Take whatever comes by that looks like it may work, you have a computer, you may have a copy machine or scanner? We mirror, scale, twist, and otherwise modify all sorts of base drawings to develop our scenes.
The chest itself is a basic design, four panel faces, a bottom, and a lid. The carving scenes are on the long faces and the lid. The internals are setup with two floating trays and an open space. We had the hinges custom made to compensate for the overhang of the lid and provide support spread out over the frame sections without having to penetrate the carved panels. This allowed all the panels to float freely.
The detail work is burned in. The paint is primarily acrylic washes and tints and the whole thing is antiqued with a golden oak stain (over the acrylic) and then hand rubbed with a Waterlox tung oil finish.
-- Eric M. Saperstein, Master Craftsman www.artisansofthevalley.com