I have other photos of this piece but since I had to take it down while decorating for the Holidays I decided to get a few closer shots showing a bit more detail.
Acanthus leaves are probably my favorite form to use. I like them simply because you can do so much with them. You can twist them turn ’em, fan them out trail them off etc. Just the perfect form to use to fill a space of any shape or size. They look good as borders around frames, details on edges, pediments, spilling down table legs, the base for columns etc.. Well,, the list is pretty much endless.
Here I made the Shell ( approx. 14 inches high) and the two side pieces to sit on some molding that frame an archway between my living room and dining room. It’s done in Basswood and for some reason I decided to leave it natural. On the opposite side of the arch I carved instead of the shell, my family’s coat of arms and painted that carving. Then again, we have the history of the design and paint seemed natural to really define the piece. A bit of glazing for an antiqued look helps complete the piece.
The overall width of the piece with the two side pieces is just under 48 inches. But here you can see how the Acanthus leaves, wrapped around the curves and sweeps of the molding that supports it can look. It’s done in one piece and I tend to think the lines of the leaves accentuate the curves and you can use them to guide your eyes back and forth along the piece creating an interesting carving to look at. The lines move away, curve back , dive and sweep to keep your eye moving across the design.
The overall piece. You can imagine a line of molding that this piece would sit on. The very center leaves spilling out of the shell actually extend over the molding itself so the piece isn’t restricted to just sitting on top of the molding.
Here you can see the depth of the piece. This added to the “drama” of the piece.
It’s hidden here with the Holiday decorations, a partial arch I built with welded wire and covered in greens in order to display my collection of Egyptian glass ornaments. They don’t hang quite right on a regular tree and this focuses the collection as it branches out in the opposite direction as well.
And here is the other carving of the Coat of Arms I mentioned on the opposite side of the wall. You can see I used the same design for the side pieces and just changed the center carving. This piece , like the other , is not fastened to the wall. Even the swag with my name on it is simply held in place by the way it’s carved at the ends, locking itself into the volutes of the Acanthus leaves. Easy to remove to clean, or put elsewhere at any time.