Most of our caricature carvings are from basswood, a relatively soft wood that is close grained and leaves a smooth surface when cut with a knife or gouge. A cutout is created from a block of wood by tracing a pattern on the block and cutting the outline with a band saw; or a roughout is made from a master carving using a router-duplicator. The actual carving is all hand work with knives and gouges that are used to refine the shape, smooth the surface and add details and texture. This makes every carving unique. While the basic form may be similar, no two are the same. When the carving is completed it is coated with sanding sealer and then painted with acrylics. The painted carving is antiqued with pigmented linseed oil and sealed with an acrylic clear coat. We both carve and paint and most carvings are a cooperative project.
Roger is the woodturner and has a Powermatic 3520 lathe, over 30 turning tools and welcomes new turning challenges. Some wood is purchased and other wood is “free wood” from local trees that have been trimmed or cut down. Green wood may be turned to a final form after which it will warp as it dries taking on a new shape. Other times the green wood may be rough turned and left to dry before the object is given its final shape on the lathe. Grain patterns, especially in burls, are revealed as the turning process takes place often revealing beautiful patterns and colors. The creative process may continue with carving, coloring or piercing after turning on the lathe. After sanding with several grades of sandpaper, often to 800 or 1200 grit, a variety of final finishes are used depending on the object and its use. The goal is always to create a shape that is pleasing to both sight and touch.