PILEATED WOODPECKER - basswood bird, tupelo and mahogany mount

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Project by Roman - THE BOOTMAN posted 08-14-2011 08:51 PM 6835 views 2 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My carving buddy Cliff obtained the basswood blanks in exchange for me guiding him through this carving. After many hours of carving, painting and generous insertions of beer, he got a nice piece that he mounted on a fencepost base and I constructed the abstract tree! PS Had to clear away the dust at the end of each carving session!

This is a full size pattern and the piece stands 18 inches high and 14 inches wide with an 8 inch diameter mahogany base. In my carvings I try to make the habitat as close to real as possible. I had some scrap tupelo lying around in my shop and I got out the glue and tried to simulate a tree hit by lightning. The woodpecker is harvesting any beetles he could find. I also try to make the mount and base as tight a fit as possible so I make a template out of ‘bondo’ to connect the base to the tree cleanly. The bondo portion is easily carved and provides a strong attachment(seen at the base and branch connection).

The pileated is not a black bird but a very dark brown, a colour I obtained by using a lot of washes of red and various tones of blue acrylic paints. I hope you enjoy this one. RH

-- Author of POWER CARVING BOOTS & SHOES - Schiffer Publishing. Available online or your favourite bookstore.

19 comments so far

View WayneC's profile


13754 posts in 4097 days

#1 posted 08-14-2011 08:55 PM

This is absolutely wonderful. I will have to get some beer and come over for lessons….lol My carving portfolio is up to a power carved trout, 3 spoons and some relief carved acorn leaves. I have a long way to go….

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View grosa's profile


1004 posts in 2829 days

#2 posted 08-14-2011 09:12 PM

Very nice, great job.

-- Have a great day.

View KnotCurser's profile


2025 posts in 3068 days

#3 posted 08-14-2011 11:25 PM

A true work of art – fantastic!


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View mtnwild's profile


3474 posts in 3527 days

#4 posted 08-15-2011 12:54 AM

WOW, fantastic!

That lightning tree is awesome! Love it all, beautiful project…....................

-- mtnwild (Jack), It's not what you see, it's how you see it.

View Cozmo35's profile


2200 posts in 3036 days

#5 posted 08-15-2011 01:14 AM

I this is the result of a “generous insertions of beer”, you should increase the intake. Outstanding work!

-- If you don't work, you don't eat!.....Garland, TX

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 3018 days

#6 posted 08-15-2011 02:13 AM

I have a Pileated Woodpecker living in my neighborhood! I see him every now and then so I can relate to this piece. Beautiful work!

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View chrisstef's profile


17386 posts in 3006 days

#7 posted 08-15-2011 02:31 AM

Thats a really great carving of a pileated. We had one in our yard all summer 2 years ago, theyre really awesome to look at and your carving skills nailed it along with the paint. All your missing is the softball size holes they put in dead trees, ohh and the sound of someone hitting a tree with a hammer.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View Roman - THE BOOTMAN's profile


940 posts in 2686 days

#8 posted 08-15-2011 02:37 AM

Thanks for the comments.
I still haven’t figured it out how they avoid getting a concussion with all their hammering!

-- Author of POWER CARVING BOOTS & SHOES - Schiffer Publishing. Available online or your favourite bookstore.

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 3078 days

#9 posted 08-15-2011 05:43 AM

Wow, it looks so real, Roman! Great job!

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

View peteg's profile


4287 posts in 2823 days

#10 posted 08-15-2011 09:40 AM

You just keep outdoing yourself my friend, we don’t have these guys down our way, but, thanks to you I swear I can see one sitting just out the door :)))
Another stunner, he aint no little sucker either.
BTW what sort of beer do you use to lubricate your chissels, hope we can get some down our way LOL

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View helluvawreck's profile


31096 posts in 2867 days

#11 posted 08-15-2011 01:23 PM

He really did a great job on that woodpecker; it’s very realistic.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Maveric777's profile


2693 posts in 3077 days

#12 posted 08-15-2011 02:44 PM

Think this is one my favorites so far Roman… Wow… Just flat out awesome!

-- Dan ~ Texarkana, Tx.

View Spoontaneous's profile


1334 posts in 3330 days

#13 posted 08-15-2011 03:54 PM

Woody would have been proud.

Very nice work Roman, I have been really working on the beer drinking part… but somehow, my carving isn’t getting any better. Really great job…. so real!

-- I just got done cutting three boards and all four of them were too short. (true story)

View Roman - THE BOOTMAN's profile


940 posts in 2686 days

#14 posted 08-15-2011 04:06 PM

i must make it clear that I don’t partake in any spirits when I’m carving or doing other wood working. It happens when the shop is closed and it is time to reflect. My friend Cliff and I had many reflections!

-- Author of POWER CARVING BOOTS & SHOES - Schiffer Publishing. Available online or your favourite bookstore.

View wiswood2's profile


1138 posts in 3696 days

#15 posted 08-15-2011 05:58 PM

Great job. It looks just like the two that I have come to my yard every so often.

-- Chuck, wiswood2

showing 1 through 15 of 19 comments

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