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  • problem child

    ya know this is a great forum but one problem is there is too many really good carvers and painters and that leaves a guy like me wondering when my ship will come in, yes im jealous and i know it shouldnt bother me but when i get done with something i alway look at it and compare it the work i see here and fail111 the reason im bringing it up is that i bet three is a lot of members who feel the same and i guess you only post wen you ave stellar work but that leaves out a majority of folks who work hard and try and put their piece on the bottom shelf and it never sees the light of say again I would like to see more middle of the road guys post their carvings and maybe get a little bit of friendly advice or that nice comment to give them a jolt of much needed confidence.
    and it seems like the really good carvers dont say a lot and with exceptions and that worries me a bit also, in that the only way this art is going to be carried on is thru interaction of the participants i mean a book is nice but a bit of encouragement and some hand me down hands on wisdom is even better. I think it pretty good for wci to offer the forum i mean they ae ibn th business of selling magazines not paying for a website anfd have any of you ever thought what you would do it this all folded? we the participants need to participate generously to ensure wci keeps this all afloat for us. so we all, good and bad and someplace in between need to step up and stir the pot. this is one inbstance where too many cooks wont spoil the soup and actually make it better and kep it going. and we need to encourage others to join I see too many good carvers on fb and pinterest who arent members- why not? some of them dont want o share their RTISTIC KNOWLEDGE WITHOUT PAY BUT WE NEED TO ENCOURAGE FOLKS WHATEVER THIE ILK TO STEP UP - sorry end of rant

  • #2
    I've always thought about wood carving but never did more than put a sharp point on a stick. Last November 2018 I had some extra time bought a couple knives and a micro gouge and v-tool set watched dougoutside, Gene Messer, sharonmyart and Kevin coates on you tube.
    If I watch someone carve and see how they do certain things I seem to be able to do something similar. If I try carving something on my own it seems I can't do much.

    I've always been handy at just about anything I've tried to do. I turned 60 last December and really want to carve what I can invision in my own head and hopefully with practice I'll be able to.

    Since I started I've not thrown away one block of wood because I thought it stunk. I just carve it into something else. Usually one of something that I've already carved.

    I don't carve and post just to read that someone likes the carving. I post to read criticism on my carvings.
    I enjoy and get inspired by everything I see posted on the forum and am envious as all get out from some of the veteran Carver's.

    I now have quite a few back issues of wci and a few carving books that hopefully will have me carving for a long time.

    I agree with Rick and would like to see more posts and pics from other members.

    I've learned so much from the forum and almost not a day goes by I don't learn something new.

    Comment


    • #3
      Interesting thread, and great comments. It would be interesting to see just who you consider a great carver? I know the ones I consider "great" and I know the ones that I consider "good" and also the ones that I feel will never be in either category. But, to me, that isn't the point. Carving is about the journey, and anyone who enjoys carving, no matter if their finished product is spectacular or ordinary, it is theirs and they should be proud of it. Carving isn't a contest to me, and while I know some folks feel it is, to me it isn't. I tend to congratulate folks on their work to encourage them, not to award them a trophy. I have been carving since I was a teenager, and am now 67, and while I don't consider my work spectacular, I know that it does hold merit, it looks good. Some folks that I meet tell me how wonderful it must be to be so talented! I wonder if it isn't just perseverance and practice. I am the one who sits down and try's something, rather just sitting there watching TV or reading the magazine and saying: "Gee, I wish I could do that!". You never know what you can do until you try!!!

      Just my $0.02 worth.

      Bob
      Before they slip me over the standing part of the fore sheet, let them pipe: "Up Spirits" one more time.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by squbrigg View Post
        Some folks that I meet tell me how wonderful it must be to be so talented! I wonder if it isn't just perseverance and practice. I am the one who sits down and try's something, rather just sitting there watching TV or reading the magazine and saying: "Gee, I wish I could do that!". You never know what you can do until you try!!!

        Bob
        Wow, Bob, you touch on something there that has bothered me since I started carving 10 or so years ago. People saying things like, "You're so lucky. I wish I had talent like that." Luck has nothing to do with it, and talent very little. It's all about perseverance and practice. Study, thought, try something, lather, rinse, repeat. People ask me how I find the time to carve. I tell them that I turned off the TV. Like my dad used to say, "We find the time to do the things we think are important."

        Great artists all say similar things. It's not about inherent talent or flashes of inspiration. It's about putting in the time and effort.

        Not that I consider myself a great carver. I'm not even particularly good or original. But I have fun torturing poor innocent hunks of wood, and from time to time I create something that other people like. It beats sitting in front of the television, letting my brains leak out through my ears.

        Comment


        • #5
          I see this as an "affinity group," a gathering of people who share an interest in woodcarving. All of them could pursue their interest in the privacy of their workshop or hobby space, but they choose to share their interest in this space. Why? Perhaps to get positive feedback or encouragement or to show "look what I have done!" In a self-chosen group like this the skill levels will vary wildly, from rank beginners to "experts." It also varies from people who carve things like you carve to some who carve very different projects using techniques you've never tried.

          So how do we interact in an affinity group? - with words and photos. The precision of our words and the clarity of our photos are important to the process. Like other social contacts, we may get what we're looking for in a single contact or a few sessions. Perhaps that is why we have a high turnover of members. What can we do about it? We can follow the "golden rule" - to offer to others the information (words and images) that we would want for ourselves.

          Comment


          • #6
            I carve for personal enjoyment and satisfaction, and frankly, don't compare what I do to others works. Yes, some ideas are worth pursuing, but whether someone likes or dislikes my carvings isn't a factor. Positive comments will help. If we are here to compete, then I am not one of those members. I do learn a lot by other carvers work and it always helps.

            The hobby is so widespread I suspect some, including me, love the unique work but not something I want to do. For example; I don't do chip carving, character pieces, detailed artistic pieces, chainsaw carving, etc. However, what they do is amazing and admired. I'm just driven by what is inside me and needs to come out...through the brain that is.

            Interesting thread, as mentioned before. Always interested in diverse ideas/opinions. BTW, I feel the same about my oil painting, wood burning, etc. Just explore the niche.
            Bill
            Living among knives and fire.

            http://www.westernwoodartist.com

            Comment


            • #7
              "But I have fun torturing poor innocent hunks of wood, and from time to time I create something that other people like. It beats sitting in front of the television, letting my brains leak out through my ears."

              Priceless words of wisdom.
              Bill
              Living among knives and fire.

              http://www.westernwoodartist.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi Rick , it sounds like you are not satisfied with your progress in your Carving Pieces . I know you have been in WCI for years so you have Stick-to 0f -us in the Hobby , not to mention the Money you have invested trying to get the right Tool . Having the right Tool is a big help but you must know how to use it correctly and that takes Patience and Determination . Try different Styles of Carving and you might find the Style that fits your Skills . I can not do Flat Plane Carving , my Mind just won't work with the Sharp Edges , I have to break all edges and make them Smooth . I appreciate the Pieces the our Members do and enjoy seeing them , still knowing that it's not what I can do . I don't know what level of a Carver that I am and it doesn't matter for I carve for my Satisfaction . You might be Impatient on the time it takes you to finish a Piece . When I started Carving it took me 3 Weeks to finish a Carving , it still takes me over a Week , I do my Carvings in Sections .Cut out the Shape , Rough shape the whole piece and quit when I get tired or start to Hurry . Next day do a little more and enjoy the time making Chips. Before I know it's Weeks and the Piece is done . I believe you said your Retired from the Police Force , that took Patience , I'm sure you didn't Shoot someone for J Walking . Ha,Ha. What I'm saying Rick is be Patient and keep trying . Didn't mean to right a Book . Merle

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hi Rick, I felt the same way when I look at some of the Western Artists and think that I will never be that good. Then, I thought, well they were probably as bad as I am at one point, when they first started, and I just have to keep going and keep practicing.

                  I use the like button a lot on posts I read rather than comment. I’m too much of a beginner to have much to offer, but I have gotten positive feedback and constructive criticism from many here. I’m mainly carving for my enjoyment and I say just keep going and post your work asking for advice to make it better. I’ll bet folks here will be glad to help you out. I know they’ve already helped me.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    well Merle I am not satisfied with anything as of late ai have played guitar for 50 yrs played classical and flamenco and just went back to electric after a 20 year hiatus and even though i have played with bands and world class classical and flamenco guys I have never been satisfyied with what i do there always seems to be something not quite right I guess I approach carving the same way perhaps a fault but maybe thats the incentive to get better to lookk at what you do with a critical eye. I mean i know a guy who studied guitar in a music conservatory in vienna when he was eigth and he has played with orchestras all over the world probably the most talented gifted guitatr player i have ever met and he will take a three note passage and practice thosethree notes for literally two hours until he is satisfyied, I dont have that much determination or perseverance but when i hear him play and worst yet try to play with him he soars over anything i do. frustrating but i know other than the raw talent why he is so good he works at it never gives up and demands precision. Maybe thats how i approach carving not sure and im in a carving doldrum again where i turn out more misshapen ill begotten wrecks than actual pieces i am proud to call my own. I mean im trying to carve pumpkins for Halloween and they are all going in the fireplace shouldnt be so hard ya know? oh well rant over again sorry to be such a pest

                    sorry for the typing hands dont work so good anymore

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Let me tell you about Daryl. He joined our local woodcarving club a few years ago. Within weeks he was working on a very ambitious project - a dragon about 18" tall. He had a strange collection of tools and he never seemed to worry about sharpening them. In a very short time the dragon was done and Daryl was off on several new and difficult projects. Daryl demonstrated something we knew existed - people with an innate ability to visualize shapes in a piece of wood and bring it out with their tools. We can never hope to keep up with such people. All we can do is admire their work, then go back to our own projects. Pick up that chunk of wood. Where should I cut next?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Rick, don't compare yourself to anyone except yourself! Give yourself little kudos when you do something you feel turned out better than last time. We don't all see things the same, feel things the same, and we certainly don't need things to be the same. Enjoy yourself, be happy you have the ability to do the things you do. Get into what you are feeling when you carve, that is all you..no one else. And what you create is all yours.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by rickm View Post
                          well Merle I am not satisfied with anything as of late ai have played guitar for 50 yrs played classical and flamenco and just went back to electric after a 20 year hiatus and even though i have played with bands and world class classical and flamenco guys I have never been satisfyied with what i do there always seems to be something not quite right I guess I approach carving the same way perhaps a fault but maybe thats the incentive to get better to lookk at what you do with a critical eye. I mean i know a guy who studied guitar in a music conservatory in vienna when he was eigth and he has played with orchestras all over the world probably the most talented gifted guitatr player i have ever met and he will take a three note passage and practice thosethree notes for literally two hours until he is satisfyied, I dont have that much determination or perseverance but when i hear him play and worst yet try to play with him he soars over anything i do. frustrating but i know other than the raw talent why he is so good he works at it never gives up and demands precision. Maybe thats how i approach carving not sure and im in a carving doldrum again where i turn out more misshapen ill begotten wrecks than actual pieces i am proud to call my own. I mean im trying to carve pumpkins for Halloween and they are all going in the fireplace shouldnt be so hard ya know? oh well rant over again sorry to be such a pest

                          sorry for the typing hands dont work so good anymore
                          Rick, a wise man once said "some people fish for a lifetime and don't realize it isn't the fish they are after." I kind of see my carving the same way. I do it for enjoyment, but will never be "accomplished." Don't care and just love carving. It took me many, many years to give up being the perfectionist...just do what makes me happy now. It was a hard lesson to learn and retirement helped.

                          BTW, my musical ability is so bad that in fourth grade the teacher told me to move my lips but don't sing out loud in the chorus. I do appreciate listening to good music but can't even play the drums. Had a genius daughter though who could just pick up an instrument and play. Amazing kid.

                          Just carve, worts and all. Many people don't know what end of a knife to hold and at least we are beyond that point. Just enjoy doing it...JMO.

                          Bill
                          Living among knives and fire.

                          http://www.westernwoodartist.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Rick, we never achieve perfection in anything we do in this life, all we can do is pursue it. You should be comparing your current carvings against those you did last year, five and ten years ago. That's the only relevant measuring stick, self improvement.

                            You complain about not enough posts of other carvers' work, but what percentage of your own do you post? I post one now and then, not looking for kudos but just out of a desire to share what I've done with friends of like interests...I know I'm not what I consider a good carver, just a "middlin'" one, and that's OK, it's still fun. Neither you nor I will be a Grinling Gibbons, but we can hack away happily to our heart's content.
                            I don't critique others' carvings unless they specifically ask for it and I think I have something relevant and helpful to say. Also, I seldom comment on carvings in areas that I don't participate in, such as caricature (I always have to spell check that word; never can remember how to spell it! ) or chip carving for example.

                            I suggest you post whatever you carve and ASK for criticism and critique, and take the responses in the spirit in which they're given...only criticism is helpful, "atta boys" are flattering but not helpful. But I suppose it depends on what you're looking for. I benefit from seeing work better than my own, don't you?



                            Rick, I've followed you on this board for enough years to know that you're just in a funk right now and that you'll shake it off, my friend. Let's see some carvings, and requests for C&C!
                            Arthur

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                            • #15
                              One of the best ways to improve your carvings is to attend a class such as the Renegade Rendezvous in Tennessee. Just the ability to see how other carvers work on something, as well as seeing what the instructors have done. I went for six years in a row to the Spring Rendezvous and only missed this past Spring because of my wife's broken hip. Not only do you see how the instructor carves, but you'll see variations on the same theme. One example: https://forum.woodcarvingillustrated...3-skateboarder Mitchell encouraged me to create my own version of a skateboarder and provided helpful comments while I was working on it.

                              I agree with the other comments above - I carve to please myself. If my wife thinks I did something well, I'll put it in my ETSY shop for sale. I end up selling most of my carvings, and a few of them many repeat copies. The 10th time I carved a pair of cardinals was still fun for me; when it becomes "not fun", I'll change to something else and retire the cardinals.

                              I don't consider myself a "great" carver - I think I have delusions of adequacy...

                              Claude
                              My FaceBook Page: https://www.facebook.com/ClaudesWoodCarving/

                              My Pinterest Page: https://www.pinterest.com/cfreaner/

                              My ETSY Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/ClaudesWoodcarving

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