When confronted with a stuffed bird, one cannot help contrasting the solidity and density of the wooden block and the feathery substance of the bird.
I found it important to tell myself that I was are not trying to re-create the exact likeness of a bird, but making a wooden carving based on the subject that, while celebrating the qualities of the wood, tells people something about the form of this beautiful creature.
The carving was undertaken on a block of Olive, found in the woodturning section of a store.
As you can see from the photographs, this bird had seen much handling and was getting a bit bedraggled.
Some might think that messing about with files and what not is hardly "proper carving". Proper carving is done with round mallets and sharp gouges, isn't it? As far as my owl is concerned, some deep hollow areas have to be excavated and such features as the wings and tail feathers have to be modelled. The time for "proper" carving has arrived.
I don't think that a blow-by-blow account of gouge cuts will be all that helpful, but some general principles might be helpful. Please hop to:Gouge Obedience Training