i use the measurement method i just described occasionally, most of the time i judge distances and relationships just by view, and mark it on the wood where i think it should be. but for important points i check with the measurement method … ok, and here is the very first rough out, clay and wood side by side



hmm ,,, admittedly, that does not look good at all yet. but it does not have to. this first rough out is only to get something reasonable to work with… did you ever notice how difficult it is, to make the first cuts on a fresh wood ? its similar like a blank piece of paper and you want do a drawing. the white paper gives no references to work with, so its easily that one feels overwhelmed by the task at hand since one not knows how to start… same is in carving, and therefore, the first step i always do is, “just to carve something” to get me into the ballpark. … now at this stage the wood shows forms, yes, most are wrong, but now i have something to work with, on which i can carve to improve it… and that means, it is now time to figure out what needs be corrected now and what is good already :

  • general shape of head looks good from sideview, except forhead, and maybe eyes too, need be pushed back
  • general shape of head is too wide on chinarea from front view, and it seems to have too much hair on top. otherwise, frontview looks ok for the roughing out stage i am at
  • side view shows i got the neck wrong, the angle is not correct and so the front is too far in front, need push that back
  • and, the back is too far back, need push that to front much more. this will then create the nice neckline. and, i think, then he will look more upright as in the clay. now he looks hunched over somehow..sigh
  • general shape of head looks good from sideview
  • so the next step will be addressing these points, to get the roughout close in proportions and angles to the clay model….

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    5 Comments (+add yours?)

    1. Ed Pitts
      Mar 07, 2010 @ 00:00:09

      That is one of the best ideas I have found.

      No more calculating!

      Thanks, Ed


      • dorisfiebig
        Mar 07, 2010 @ 08:36:40

        thanks ed ! its not mine idea, its classical, its just math applied. i love seeing math be useful.


        • Bill Voss
          Jun 27, 2010 @ 18:54:32

          FANTASTIC method for scaling!! I am in the process of carving a larger version of a Crucifix from a model. This will save a great deal of time versus calculating.

          I will also share this with our wood carving club as a great “hint”.


    2. mike
      Aug 10, 2011 @ 16:45:18

      Doris , you know from WCI, that I love all your portraits.



      • dorisfiebig
        Aug 11, 2011 @ 11:29:17

        hi Mike, yes i remember that 🙂 thank you for commenting, it is always so very nice to hear feedback. and, joel is a special piece to me. thanks again.


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