Aug. 7 "Everyone Carves Something"
night. Everyone is asked to bring some woodcarving tools and whatever carving
project he/she is currently working on. Also, members are asked to bring
a recently-completed carving to share with everyone during the "Show and
Tell" portion of this informal program.
Sept. 4 - Creating Decorative Scenes and Habitats for Mounting//Displaying
Carvings - JoAnne Brady (** Rescheduled from March cancellation.)
Oct. 2 - Carving Hands – Part 2 - Carl Borst
Nov. 6 - Carving Kachinas - Monty Foster
Dec. 4 - Christmas party (potluck dinner). Bring your
favorite Christmas carving for display. Slide Show of Club Activities -
* Programs and "Everyone Carves Something" sessions will normally last between
45 minutes and one hour.
... also, regarding programs, I intended to pass out
and discuss a survey regarding programs for 2002 at our July meeting, but
attendance was so sparse that I decided to hold off until our Aug. meeting;
for those of you who like to get a head start on things, a copy of the survey
is listed below: 2002 PROGRAMS I am looking for your input regarding what
you would like to see offered as programs about carving during the 2002 year.
So please respond to the following few questions below. Thanks! ---Dick Moran
1. Do you have any suggestions regarding interesting
programs about carving that you would like to see presented during the next
year in any of the following general categories? (Please be specific!) Relief
Carving - Bird Carving - Carving Human Figures - Power
Carving - Painting or Staining - Other Topics ?? –
2. Should we continue the "Show and Tell" portion of
the program? ____("yes" or "no") If "yes"... do you have any suggestions
about how we could improve it? Should we continue having the "Everyone
Carves Something" informal programs on an alternating monthly basis with
formal carving programs? My concern is that the "Everyone Carves Something
" sessions frequently merely turn into "talk time"... and that many members
don't bring their tools or even a blank piece of wood and a knife with them
to those meetings. Also, and it may just be my imagination, it seems as if
attendance at "Everyone Carves..." meeting nights seems to be not as good
as when we have a formal program scheduled. If you feel that we should continue
these informal programs, please suggest ways of encouraging more people to
Mike In Motion
by Michael Bloomquist
you get your ideas?”...
...or the sight of one too many bears carved with a chainsaw.
I do recall once where a piece of music inspired an idea for a wood carving,
but it should have been sketched quickly or scrawled somewhere for it doesn’t
come back to mind now. Maybe when that music comes on the radio again...someday.
Times like those is why you always have that notebook/sketch book handy like
Peter Ortel advised us a couple years ago. When possible, it’s great
to literally file the idea away . There’s an old, cheap file cabinet
in my shop with a drawer devoted to patterns and ideas: a folder for mammals,
a folder for birds, one for Santas (Victorian Homes has a great yearly special),
and of course a folder each for dragons, gnomes, and faeries. When
the inspiration is a single article or advertisement in a magazine that is
do to be recycled, just clip it out and file it. If the source is not
yours to mutilate, then a Xeroxed or computer scanned copy is the way to
go. Collecting pictures off the web is a whole separate article, but
it’s an incredible source as well.
...At times ideas
come from everywhere and anywhere -the shape of a tree, a glance from a fellow
bus passenger, the slouch of a figure, a musical phrase, a picture in a newspaper,
a character in a book: these are the sparks that often light the tinder.
by John Rood.
It seems carving ‘ideas’ take on
personalities of there own. Sometimes they seem like friendly ghosts.
They come back and haunt you from time to time, triggered by some situation
or activity similar to the one that gave birth to them, but unlike most phantasms,
they become less ethereal and more well formed with each visit. This
trend continues until, one day, you see a certain piece of wood and that ghost
taps you on the shoulder and says, “It’s time”. Another happy, un-ghostlike
characteristic is that, when the carving is finished, the spirit isn’t given
‘peace’ and dispelled. Instead, it is made real in the form of the
carving, and maybe you are given some peace... until the next haunting resumes.
Then there are the old friend ‘ideas’.
They were around constantly for a period of time, and they were very good
friends. They always showed up for those times when you couldn’t actually
carve, but you had time to create. Then you moved on, or they moved
off, or another friend came along. The idea revisits you from time
to time, but they needed much more frequent interaction to keep them alive.
Someday later a picture, or a situation, or someone else’s work reminds you
of them. You try to find their phone number, or the address on the
last Christmas card. You may or may not make contact again. If
you do the phone call is awkward or the letter isn’t answered, and regardless
it’s not the same. It is usually bittersweet, but not a total waste
because there are pieces of that idea that made it into other projects, or
will make it into future projects. Those friends live on in other subtle
Then there are the Type-A ‘ideas’.
They are hyper-active, they are rude, they are bossy, and they have more
energy than anything has a right to. These ideas are sometimes a real
pain-in-the-a__. You suspect they have an intravenous feed for caffeine,
and you just want to find it so you can rip it out. These ‘ideas’ should
come with an ‘off’ switch. They shove aside your other projects and
commissions that you should be working on. They don’t care, because
they need to be done right now! These are the ideas that keep you up
late when you really need your sleep. They grab you by the scruff of
the neck, make you grope for your glasses, and shuffle you out to the kitchen
or computer desk to make “just one more drawing” of the damn thing.
As annoying as they are there is an up side to them... they are magical.
Typically, the period from concept to completion is lightning fast... only
a fraction of what the project should have taken. For the entire life
of the process you are in a ‘carving zone’. There are no doubts about
where you’re going with it, no delays while you agonize about the next step,
and, when it is complete, no regrets that you did not do some element just
a little differently. Absolute magic.
Then we have the “ships that pass in the
night” ideas. Maybe the ‘other sense’ was on the most sensitive setting
that day. The ‘other’ sense, not the ‘sixth sense’. More likely
it is your five senses all coming in with no static or discord, and being
connected ‘just so’ with your imagination. It’s that other ‘seeing’
that everyone can do, but seems to get exercised most by those who enjoy
creating. Many folks exercise this sense whether they admit to being
artists or not. Regardless, the receiver was ‘on’, and you were in a certain
place, at the right time, and you saw ‘it’, and it became a carving in your
mind. Unfortunately, it was a quick and fleeting vision. It went by
like a diving hawk, or she stepped off the bus long before your stop and
just after you noticed her, or the traffic light changed and the cretin behind
you redefined “a New York minute” to be a few milliseconds shorter still.
You wish for a camera, you wish for a piece of paper and a dull pencil, anything
so you can scrawl it down and stuff in your shirt pocket or wallet.
It was that person in the waiting room that for some reason you knew you should
talk to. Something about them told you they were special, they
were living a very good life regardless of their wealth or health. That
sense told you they had found special wealths, they had walked a very unique
life-path, and you could and should learn from them. Then, before you
could make that excuse for conversation, they were called from the room.
I believe we will never live long enough
to carve all our ideas. Probably we should enjoy collecting as many
as we are able and not consider it wasteful to not transform them all into
wood, just necessary exercise to make better the ones we do manage. I believe
you cannot or should not capture them all in actual carvings. Someday
though I hope I hear that musical phrase at just the right time again...
and my notebook is nearby.
Hey Folks, keep the chips piled high, the
edges keen, and keep working with that other sense as much as possible.
Full-of-it, as usual,
Hearts & Flowers
By Andy Ebli
One Card was sent out this month to Joe Rusik
and Family. Joe had some surgery recently and we wish him well
and hope is feeling better soon.
Otherwise all seems well and keep it like
that! If you can....
By Carol Ayers
SHIRTS, HATS, APRONS AND PATCHES…
Since we have so many new members in our club I would like to explain what
is available to our club members and how the ordering works. All of
the items are embroidered with our club logo and the pricing is as follows:
- Polo shirt, light ash gray (short sleeve with collar and tab front)
- Long sleeve T-shirt, light ash gray is $12.50
- Crew neck sweatshirt, light ash gray is $16.50
- Hooded, full zipper front sweatshirt with side pockets, light ash
gray is $22.00
- Apron, natural with no pocket is $8.50
- Hat, tan is $7.70
- Club embroidered patch is $3.50
(sales tax is included in all the pricing)
Ordering these items is as follows:
Patches are on hand and can be bought from me at any time. Shirts, sweatshirts
and aprons need a total of 6 orders, any combination. Hats
need a total of 12 orders. When I receive enough orders, I will then
request the money for your order and then place the order with the company.
Orders usually take from 1 to 2 weeks to complete depending of the availability
of the items.
Right now I have been holding onto 3 orders, 1
for a zipper sweatshirt and 1 for an apron and one for a Polo. I need
only 3 more orders (other than hats), and I can collect money and place the
order. If you have been thinking about ordering but have been putting
it off, now is the time to do it. In the fall the company we order
from gets extremely busy with school orders for team events………It is great
to have a club shirt or logo on an apron or sweatshirt when doing the fairs!!!
You can place an order by
e-mailing me, Carol Ayers at:
or writing me at
3 Poe Court
or phoning me at
Ballston Spa, NY 12020
Letters to the Editor
The newsletter looks good....everyone
has a column...very newspaper-like. All you need are 3 more sections: funnies,
crossword and Dear Abby. Hey, that might not be a bad idea. Call the column
Dear Woody and members can write in with some carving problems. You'll have
a chance to plug the club's video library and get other members involved
as resident experts. Hmmm...I'm starting to like this more and more! In fact,
I'm gonna send you the first letter.
Great idea Doris! Thanks for the input
will give it a try....
Send corespondence to...
117 Riverview Parkway
Rome, N.Y. 13440
Or Email to;
I recently moved to a tree-less, though beautiful part of the country.
I'd like to carve some more walking sticks, but there are no sticks around
here. I usually carve the top and then attach it to a stick I found in the
woods. Since that's no longer possible, I'm considering going to the lumber
yard and buying some boards. It would have to be strong, but carve-able since
I don't have a lathe. Do you have any recommendations on the thickness and
type of wood which would be suitable? Please help....
Living in the desert
Dear Living in the Desert,
First off, my condolences... a woodcarver in the desert, hmmm. Not an optimum
move, but I'm sure there were reasons. If you can find it, furniture grade,
eight/quarter (8/4) poplar or cherry would be my first choices. 8/4 means
it started life at 2" thick. Then drying, milling, and/or sanding might have
it down to a 'real' thickness of 1-3/4". You will need someone to 'rip' saw
them to 'sticks' 1-3/4" by 1-3/4". Since you don't have a lathe I would suggest
a draw knife, and some way to clamp the sticks. That's the way the old-timers
got things 'round' when a lathe wasn't handy.
In addition to lumber yards you might
try some carving supplier's that sell 'sticks' through their catalogues.
These would be closer to the raw material you were used to collecting. Try
1305 East 1120
South Provo, Utah 84606
Keep on Carvin'
Hi. I have really enjoyed looking
at the faces carved into wood (woodspirits) and wondered if there is a book
or manual to help a beginner get started in it. What tools are needed? Where
can I get that kind of information? Thanks.
Dr. K. Meyers,
Principal Kissimmee Elementary
It's possible to carve woodspirits
with just a knife, but it goes more smoothly with a couple of gouges and
a v-tool as well as the knife. Sizes depend on what size woodspirits you
plan on doing. Traditionally, 'found' wood is best for liberating woodspirits,
though most any wood seems to hold them. Nothing is as easy to carve as cottonwood
bark, but after that basswood and butternut limbs would be my next choice.
Tom Wolfe has three books on carving
them, but my favorite is "Woodspirits and Walking Sticks". He also has a
video out (and in our club video library). In another favorite of mine, Harold
Enlow has several different faces in "How to Carve Faces in Driftwood". Hope
this helps... send some pics along when you get some carved. If you
surf 'The Web', there are some great examples and on-line instructions at:
Keep on Carvin'
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