Many people have asked me about my technique for doing my carved images. I tell them that almost every aspect of the carving is done using hand tools, generally a 1/16 in. V-gouge and a 1/4 in. flat chisel. This is enormously time consuming, but results in a look and feel that cannot be achieved using power tools. This is especially the case with the carvings that I do of the flowers and plants that are featured in these works.
I begin by doing a careful line drawing of the plant. Often I do the drawing on tracing paper, although occasionally I use Strathmore 70 lb. drawing paper. I transfer the drawing to the wood - usually 1/8 in. birch plywood - using Saral carbon paper. I then set about carving the outline using the V-gouge. Once the outline is finished, I go over it with the sharp corner of the flat chisel. I then use the chisel to remove the first layer of wood, and to carve into it as desired. I sharpen these tools every 20 minutes or so using a soft pine shaper and a leather strop. Because I do this so frequently, I very rarely use a sharpening stone, although I have two excellent Japanese stones for this purpose.
Once the carving is finished, I go back over it very carefully to bring out the details.
I am a San Francisco artist who enjoys making art and visiting art exhibits.