Sunday, March 22, 2015

Monthly Meeting for March

With a new time set for 9:00 AM,  the monthly third Saturday meeting of the South Dakota Woodcarvers got off to an early start as carvers began work on a laughing bear project.  These projects usually start with partially shaped band saw cut outs, but this one (from Woodcarving Illustrated, Issue # 40) starts with just a 2 x 2 x 4.5 inch block of basswood--which turned out also to be harder than usual.

Please note that the meeting for April will be on the FOURTH Saturday, April 25, due to preparations at the Center for the Gourmet Guys, Sunday April 19. 
Nancy Torkelsen
Her first attempt at 3D figure carving

Welcome to new members:
 Roger Coon,  Nancy Torkelsen,
and Harold Parlet!

Chief Joseph, first of four Indian Chiefs to be carved
by A. T. Bortnem on cedar posts for a bed

Friday, February 27, 2015

Blue Heron in Black Walnut Wins at CWS Show

The great blue heron eating a snake that I started carving last August finally got a coat of clear finish and welded steel legs in time to make an appearance at the 35th Annual Artist of the Plains Show being held this weekend at the Downtown Holiday Inn.

 I thought it still needed a lot of work, but it captured the eyes of whomever did the judging, and for the next couple of days it will wear a ribbon for the three dimensional Best of Show.

Because of an unexpected invasion of athletic event participants the hotel parking at the main door has been blocked off for busses.  There may, however, be spaces in the back (north parking ramp).  There is a baracade and sign that says "reserved for Guests, but the bar will lift as you drive through.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Wondering About Whitling

There are plenty of resources available on the internet on the subject of whittling.  Here are a couple just to get you started:

Whimseys and Tramp Art

Eddy's Wood Carvings

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Carving with Power Tools

There is a  cherished mystique about using only hand powered tools for carving and woodworking. An apprentice in one Japanese wood working school will not be allowed to touch a band saw or any electrically powered appliance until he has first mastered the art of planing surfaces and making perfect joints with hand tools.  Those young folks like Jeremy and others who steadfastly adhere to the way things were done before electric power was available have my admiration and respect.

But... I have way too much wood and way too little time to make something of it.  I prefer a gas powered chain saw over an axe to take down a tree.  An electric chain saw in my shop can be quite helpful to quickly reduce a chunk of black walnut to something closer to what I think it could be.  I also have a band saw, table saw, Dremels, die grinders, side angle grinders, and a variety of electric powered sharpening gismos.

 I am planning to bring some of this stuff to demonstrate after the annual meeting,  Jan. 17th.  If you have a favorite power carving tool, please bring it along for show and tell..
Using Dremel with sanding disk to refine inside snake coils