Saturday, November 8, 2008


Millard has changed some of his techniques
due to one of his woodcarving seminars.
Read his story below.
Flat Plane Carver Traumatized
Recently at one of my Santa Face Carving classes, I horrified a flat plane carver by suggesting the judicious use of sandpaper on selected areas of his Santa face he had just carved using my exaggerated realistic style. I had already talked him into carving away the sharp and cleanly cut broad flat planes that he had expertly achieved on his Santa face, but when I said the word sandpaper, he started to hyperventilate! Ultimately, he suceeded in carving two faces but he said that he would do it without sandpaper, thank you. That started me asking myself if I really needed to use sandpaper on my own carvings. Above are two Santa faces I have carved. The one on the left, I have used sandpaper to refine and smooth some of the key areas on the face before painting. On the face on the right, not one bit of sandpaper was used on any part of it.
Here are some things I have observed:
1. I tended to make cleaner cuts knowing that I was not going to have the crutch of sandpaper later on.
2. The paint (watered down acrylic) seemed to go on in a more uniform way on the smooth cut surface.
3. The certainly smaller planes that I cut into my Santa face, although much smaller than in the flat plane style, had a pleasing quality that was absent from the sanded piece.
Do I plan to throw away all my sandpaper now? Probably not, but I probably will use it even more sparingly in the future.
Looking at the Santa's above which do you prefer or can you tell much difference ?
Oh, and the flat plane carver is recovering nicely!