Woodspirit in Poplar

  • Advertise with us
Project by CraigT posted 08-06-2009 07:30 PM 1628 views 2 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Woodspirit in Poplar
Woodspirit in Poplar No picture No picture No picture No picture No picture
Zoom Pictures

This is the latest addition to our woodspirit family. His name is Bartholomew and he’s carved from Poplar and is 18” tall. As our other woodspirits, he’s made from fallen timber and resides with the rest of the clan, Hiram, Jasper and Jaffe in our garden.

Work has begun on the next treebeard, in hickory. Pics to post soon.

-- Craig, North Carolina

15 comments so far

View MRod's profile


74 posts in 4087 days

#1 posted 08-06-2009 07:42 PM

Amazing work. Poplar? I took a stab at carving into pine recently cause it was cheap and around. I have a lot of poplar, does it really handle well for carving?

Again, Nice work!

-- MRod, Henderson, Colorado by way of Brooklyn!

View CraigT's profile


56 posts in 3481 days

#2 posted 08-06-2009 08:14 PM

Thanks for the comments MRod. I love poplar. When my gouges are sharp, which isn’t as often as I like, it carves like butter, plus it leaves a fairly smooth cut line so my sanding is minimal to get a nice finish. This carving is darker than usual poplar because I rubbed a light oak stain on it for contrast to help bring out the depth of the face hair and cheeks.

I’ve tried pine as well, but it gums up my tools.

Thanks again!

-- Craig, North Carolina

View Karson's profile


35125 posts in 4425 days

#3 posted 08-06-2009 08:31 PM

Great carving. Nice job.

-- 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 †

View ChrisN's profile


259 posts in 3797 days

#4 posted 08-06-2009 08:55 PM

Very Cool! Do you carve it on the base of does the base come after?

-- Chris N, Westford, MA - "If you won't eat something from your fridge that turned green...why would you eat something that started out that way?"

View CraigT's profile


56 posts in 3481 days

#5 posted 08-06-2009 09:05 PM

Chris, I carve the log mounted to a carvers vise, then mount it on a slab section using a solid brass rod. The carvers vise is an amazing tool as it give 360 degree access to the carving while you’re working on it.

-- Craig, North Carolina

View David Schmaus's profile

David Schmaus

19 posts in 3273 days

#6 posted 08-06-2009 09:48 PM

I have never been a big fan of carvings… Until I saw this.. Looks wonderful.. Can I ask, how many hours do you have into something like this? Again, wonderful work….

View CraigT's profile


56 posts in 3481 days

#7 posted 08-06-2009 10:05 PM

Thanks David, I’ll put around 3 to 4 hours into one of this size. Of course, the larger they get the longer they take due to the amount of wood that has to be removed. On the larger pieces, say 3 to 4 feet in height, I’ll start with a chainsaw to do the roughout, then move on to gouges and mallet.

-- Craig, North Carolina

View Kindlingmaker's profile


2656 posts in 3551 days

#8 posted 08-06-2009 10:35 PM


-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View Ben Kahmann's profile

Ben Kahmann

231 posts in 3296 days

#9 posted 08-06-2009 11:19 PM

Wonderful carving

-- Ben Kahmann Dayton, OH

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3798 days

#10 posted 08-07-2009 12:10 AM

You do some beautiful carvings. Thanks for posting.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Christopher's profile


576 posts in 3944 days

#11 posted 08-07-2009 01:01 AM

Craig T, this is easily one of my favorite carvings. What would you recommend for carving tools? I really want to buy a set but I really don’t know what is good quality but still reasonably priced.

View CraigT's profile


56 posts in 3481 days

#12 posted 08-07-2009 03:21 AM

Christopher, glad you like it. As far as carving tools, if you’re just starting out, Woodcraft has a great set of 6 for about $40.00. Here is the link. I used these years ago when I started out and still have my original set, and use them on occasion when working in small areas, like when carving in the eyes. The steel is good and holds an edge for a long time. There are cheaper sets out there, but you wind up resharpening all the time due to poor quality steel. They’re also on the small side so the handles fit your hand well, which is good for control when you’re learning.

If you have been carving for a while, I would suggest the Pfeil brand. They’re Swiss made and are longer than the earlier set I described so they can be used with a mallet without splitting the handles. Pfeil gouges run between $20.00 and up per piece, depending on the sweep size of the cutting end. I’ve been collecting them for years, and they’re all I use. If you go this route, you might also want to get a small mallet, say around 8 oz for delicate work, and a 20 oz for use when removing large amounts of wood. Pfeil also sells a set of 12 for about $250.00. Hope this helps. If you have additional questions, please ask.

-- Craig, North Carolina

View kolwdwrkr's profile


2821 posts in 3614 days

#13 posted 08-07-2009 05:24 AM

Bartholomew Looks Awesome. Well Done

-- ~ Inspiring those who inspire me ~

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3601 days

#14 posted 08-07-2009 05:36 AM

NOW there’s a spirit with spirit. great job.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 3455 days

#15 posted 08-07-2009 07:42 AM

Fantastic. Love your carvings.

Keep it up.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics