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base or scene

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  • base or scene

    my question could be for a lot of diff styles of carvings. as i do caricatures i find myself always wanting to make a base with a small theme or scene to sell the point. but I often find myself looking at other carving which have a nice base of oak or walnut which makes the carving stand alone, and i like it. so my question is when do you guys/girls make the carving stand alone or put it into a scene? where is the line? just a thought as there is no right or wrong answer

  • #2
    Re: base or scene

    Where is a lizard? What are they doing? Alone, the carving provides nothing provocative to trigger the viewer's mind. Log? Vine? So be it.

    I think it needs to be fragments of a story. So fragmented that you can engage the viewer's imagination to fill in the gaps.

    I had to build/make a piranha fish head, some 48" tall for a choreographed dance number. The dancer was inside it for part of the time. Spring steel frame, 1/2" foam rubber skin and paint. There were no eyes at all. I wanted the fish to be ever so slightly threatening while the audience was filling in the gaps.
    Brian T


    • #3
      Re: base or scene

      It is a hard call to make sometimes. Occasionally the figure is so good it obviously needs to stand alone in all it's glory (not my carvings but those of others here). Other times, the position of the hands or other aspect of the action of the figure needs something to suggest a reason for what they are doing. I find it hard to make good accessories for a scene, you really can't (or at least I can't) caricature inanimate objects so they just don't look right when I make them. I am confident that my answer will muddy the water of your question sufficiently that no others can see the right answer either.


      • #4
        Re: base or scene

        I've seen your work like yours is fantastic both with or without. I agree though, most carvings should have something that will allow the person viewing it to use their imagination to create the story line.



        • #5
          Base or scene

          I'm pretty happy just whittling the little folk with minor variations in dress, size, facial hair and the like. Over time I improve and I expect that I'll get a little better yet. These little characters don't take long to carve and when I'm done, I'd just prefer to start another one.

          This talk of scenes and bases and showing off a carving to its best advantage has its place. But we shouldn't forget that for many of us, it's just kind of nice to sit in front of the cracker barrel, swap lies with other carvers and whittle away the afternoon.