Refining a deadwood feature on a podocarpus.

The previous artist who had carved it put the twist into the deadwood.
After talking it over with Bobby we decided to keep the twist but try to make it more natural looking.

To paint the scene. I’m in a beautifully landscaped yard with a great collection of trees.
This was the view to my right
And my left
But I was here to work.
One thing I try to do when carving is to, instead of making lines, I carve hollows, furrows and details that, when the light hits them, make lines.
This is the first pass
That’s Bobby in the background.
And this is Bobby in the foreground
More of the tree


Using my die grinder and an inch wide roto-saw bit I followed the original design but went deeper. I’m known for how deep I can plunge my tool.
Now I’m giving up a secret carving technique. Pay attention.
Using a flex-shaft grinder (like a Foredom brand) and a wire brush bit
and a little work. That’s how I put some age into the design. Allow the tool to rotate with the grain.
The effect we are trying to emulate: a trees grain is made up of alternating hard and soft layers, the soft layer will wear away with the action of the elements (wind, water, sand) and by using the wire brush I can duplicate that process.
Here is the end result


The before (just to remind you)
In the next post I’ll show you how I carve this buttonwood

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