Birds for Beginners' Power Carving Class

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Project by Roman - THE BOOTMAN posted 08-20-2011 11:15 PM 4316 views 4 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I carved these from some scrap wood I had lying around in my shop. Using some modified Gene Larson patterns for song birds, these pieces will be used as demos for my Introduction to Power Carving for Beginners at our local Lee Valley Tools store. It’s a 3 hour evening course and we should be able to come out of the class with a bird or two.

They are easy to do and it will be an evening of rounding out a bird blank. No fancy stuff, just plain styled birds. In picture 3 you will see a special tool I made for making the eyes. It is a very expensive???? tool made with a finishing nail inserted into a piece of dowel. I use a small hand blow torch, get the nail red hot and burn in the eyes. an easy task if you are teaching your grandkids to make something neat! The hollow in the head of the nail makes a nicely rounded eyeball. It’s easier than inserting a glass eye. Top the finished birds with a bit of spray varnish and give a glaze to the eyes with a spot of clear nail polish. The kids love this project.

These are also easily carved with a knife.

Enjoy and have fun with the kids!

-- Roman:... These Boots Were Made For 'Talkin'!

10 comments so far

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 2686 days

#1 posted 08-20-2011 11:36 PM

Roman, what you have is a wonderful yet simplified way to arouse interest in working with wood for beginners. I wish you the best of luck!

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

View Roman - THE BOOTMAN's profile


835 posts in 2294 days

#2 posted 08-21-2011 01:36 AM

LittlePaw, If we don’t encourage and teach the beginners be it young or old, there will be a void, nothingness. And I enjoy teaching!

-- Roman:... These Boots Were Made For 'Talkin'!

View Rustic's profile


3242 posts in 3204 days

#3 posted 08-21-2011 03:28 AM

I would love to get a copy of your pattern as I am a carver and am looking for some simple projects

--, Rick Kruse, Grand Rapids, MI

View Michael1's profile


403 posts in 2268 days

#4 posted 08-21-2011 03:51 AM

These are very nice looking birds. Where can I get a pattern for these? I would like to try them out myself.

-- Michael Mills, North Carolina,

View Roman - THE BOOTMAN's profile


835 posts in 2294 days

#5 posted 08-21-2011 04:01 AM

Gene Larson has a good book, Powercarving Birds, Fish and Penguins Using Beautiful Hardwoods, Schiffler Publishing Ltd.
The patterns I used came from this book. They are plain and simple and the book gives an excellent description on how to carve these birds, etc. If you can get one of these books it is well worth it especially for starting carvers.

-- Roman:... These Boots Were Made For 'Talkin'!

View WayneC's profile


12847 posts in 3705 days

#6 posted 08-21-2011 07:14 AM

Here is a link to the book on Amazon. I ordered a copy.

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

View peteg's profile


3996 posts in 2431 days

#7 posted 08-21-2011 07:48 AM

You must have one hell of an inetersting garden Roman, these litlle guys, woodpeckers +++, just need some piped bird calls down there for the real deal :)))
very nice work indeed (what eles do we expect from you) I just love catching up with your posts

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

View Roman - THE BOOTMAN's profile


835 posts in 2294 days

#8 posted 08-21-2011 04:28 PM

Thanks for the link Wayne. As you can see it isn’t a very expensive reference book and the instructions are fabulous!
There are two patterns that I have yet to try and that is the fish and the other is the penguin. They look so simple to carve. Will be trying them in the future, perhaps for another beginner class!

Nice to hear from you Pete. Since I started carving birds and decoys I made a point to enhance my knowledge of them. I am a biologist by training so it wasn’t hard to do research into their behaviour. Plus my wife and I enjoy our backyard garden, so everything seems to fit. Couple that with a penchant for an art expression this is my place.

-- Roman:... These Boots Were Made For 'Talkin'!

View marter1229's profile


433 posts in 3118 days

#9 posted 08-21-2011 05:50 PM

Beautiful birds!
I just went to your projects page, and really enjoyed all your carvings,i love the boots.

Thank you for sharing

-- It's all fun, Terry******N. Idaho

View WoodenFrog's profile


2737 posts in 2521 days

#10 posted 08-23-2011 07:03 PM

So Cool! I can hear them singing…... I THINK! Great work!

-- Robert B. Sabina, Ohio.....

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