3rd carving birthday

today, exactely 3 years ago, i wondered how it be to carve wood… i did not knew anything about it, had never heard about woods proper for carving, or chisels and gouges, but i was curious, so i grabbed my swiss pocket knife, and the only piece of wood i had lying around, it was fir, and started carving, a stylised owl… my knife was dull, and i had no idea how to sharpen it at all, so the carving was very straining, also since i held the piece of wood in hand instead of clamping it… but, despite the difficulties, i saw the shapes from the wood emerge under my most messy cuts. … and, when i was finished this afternoon, with the little owl, i sanded it to remove all the fuzzies, and was so very happy about what i had achieved… i was hooked !

here is that little owl carved on that day…


then, i searched in internet information for how to sharpen, put 2 days for learning that , and off i was for a new adventure… i read about chisels and gouges, and soon got a few, and decided holding a carving in hand is not what i want do, as it is to me the most arkward way of carving, too few control, too high risk to cut myself. i actually did, rather badly…so, with chisels, gouges, and some clamps i went to bring my visions into wood… other than many carvers i know, i did not use books, tutorials or teachers, only always tried my own ideas, and tried hard to reach my vision. and, after a few days having finished a carving, i analyse it, to learn how i could do certain things better the next time i come to such situation…

this is what i carved after almost one year carving experience …


this after two years….


and, this, almost finished one, is the newest one…


if you would like see more of my path of carving, please visit my homepage riolama to see a chronology of my carvings…

i know is odd to celebrate carving birthday, but starting carving changed so much for me, i am very happy with it… and, even though it might sound like bragging, but the intention of this post is to encourage new carvers : by showing my progression, i want clearly demonstrate to you how quickly you can progress with learning to carve, ,,,and thus i encourage all who want learn to carve, just jump in, learn to sharpen your tools, trust your instincts, carve what your heart desires, be open to every idea, try everything to find what works best. try everything, even if it is not what most do. dont follow the lead, find out yourself. this way you will automatically find the best way to carve .. and you will quickly progress…,it is possible just by carving what you really want to, no practising necessary, i never did a practise piece …

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Doc Parker
    Dec 25, 2009 @ 03:47:21

    Hi Doris! Merry Christmas! I too celebrate carving birthdays, mine is December 4th. 50 years ago on my 8th birthday I got a knife I waited so long for. I had been carving with a hammer and a screwdriver hollowing out boats to float in puddles before that. I carved neckerchief slides for my Cub Scout uniform, and small cars we used to race down sloped tracks. I now look back thru 50 years and know I’ve been blessed with a desire to gnaw at wood and make things that make me and others happy. I love your work! You’ll go far! Your friend in spirit, Doc Parker


    • dorisfiebig
      Dec 25, 2009 @ 10:26:43

      hi doc parker, ha, that is great to know that more spirits like me celebrating two birthdays …. 50 years is a long time, i have way to go for that ! always wish you a happy carving… doris


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