Bark Carving

Far Guy and I have been taking a class on Bark Carving. The bark of a Cottonwood tree is very thick and suitable for carving. It has been an adventure.

 Beginnings..can you see a house? Probably not..me neither..I had to look really, really hard.

 Ah ..finally it looks like a house. This is Cottonwood bark from South Dakota.

I had a real problem with my roof ( It kept breaking off) so it became a multi level roof.

For once I was able to carve a whole project without cutting or stabbing myself with the knife. Success!

We have taken a few carving classes before, I almost always get discouraged and my carving ends up unfinished. I have a duck, a Santa, and a merry go round horse that remain unfinished.. I do much better with carving projects that are individual interpretations instead of trying to make an exact copy. I try to look at the wood and let it speak to me..most instructors are real put off by such an "individual attitude"..some look at you like you are nuts, anyone can do an exact replica with the right instructor..well except for me..I am always taking too much wood off in the wrong spots, I guess I have always been marching to a different drummer..

I took a photo of all the carvings..each one is different.

Now for a carving story: I have very little fingerprint left on my index finger on my left hand. Listen up girls, just in case you need to ever identify my body and you aren’t sure it is me..look for the non fingerprint. Anyway I was carving one day and sliced it off, yup part of the tip of my finger was laying there on the floor..Far Guy tended to me and got the bleeding stopped..it was really painful. My carving companions rescued my finger tip off of the floor just in case I wanted to have it sewed back on..thoughtful carvers. Far Guy wrapped it all up, I had a hard time looking at it. The next day I just left it covered, finally the second day I decided that I should look at it possibly while laying down so I wouldn’t faint…low and behold, I could not get the bandage off. Far Guy had used gauze and it had grown into my finger..I could not get it to budge..I soaked it for a couple of hours..it still wasn’t letting loose. There was nothing to be done ( well I suppose I could have just kept the bandage in place the rest of my life) except suck it up while laying on the couch and let Far Guy rip it off…owwie..since then I wear a steel mesh glove on my left hand..just in case..I have found that cuts are less severe with the gloves..however stabbings can still be a problem:)
 

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7 Responses to Bark Carving

  1. ESP says:

    Andrew tried to cut his finger off with a screw yesterday… he almost cried it hurt so much. Cute houses

  2. TechnoBabe says:

    That looks like fun. I wonder if my hubby would do something like that and where would I find a class in bark carving?

  3. ineeda says:

    That sounds like a dangerous enterprise!! When I read the title “bark carving” I was thinking dog bark — just didn’t get it at first! Very cute items — you could make a fairy village for a little nook outside.

  4. Far Side of Fifty says:

    Technobabe, Check with your local Wood Carving Club or with Adult Education! Good Luck! :)

  5. Sarah says:

    Shoot! This entry comes three days too late. You missed the wonderful Blackduck Woodcarver’s Festival. It is held the last Saturday of July. Please come next year.

  6. HOMD says:

    I LIKE your house — it’s whimsical! Don’t give up on this artistic outlet; you have talent! I like the fact that you give us progression photos, too. Cool!

  7. Abra La Mente says:

    Very cool houses! I love when people march to the beat of a different drum, so keep it up. I always wanted to learn to carve–perhaps when I am retired I will have time.