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Escher inspired relief #21

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  • Escher inspired relief #21

    This is my next relief carving based on a graphic design of M.C.Escher. It is a wood engraving, untitled, completed in November 1956. The original was 3-1/4" square. A similar design with two connected, spiraling fish patterns was released a year later with the title "Whirlpools."

    This carving will be 9" square in yellow cedar 2" thick. The relief may start high on the outer edges and deep in the center - or the opposite. What do YOU suggest?


  • #2
    Re: Escher inspired relief #21

    When I first looked at the pattern, the first thought I had was, "That would look great as half a globe." That is way beyond my capabilities at this time though.

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    • #3
      Re: Escher inspired relief #21

      Originally posted by pallin View Post
      This carving will be 9" square in yellow cedar 2" thick. The relief may start high on the outer edges and deep in the center - or the opposite. What do YOU suggest?
      In honor of Escher my answer is "YES"

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      • #4
        Re: Escher inspired relief #21

        I'd say deeper in the center. That would enhance the diminishing effect/depth as in a real whirlpool. Deeper on the edges would be counter to the natural effect of the smaller fish in the center, IMHO.
        Arthur

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        • #5
          Re: Escher inspired relief #21

          I agree with Arthur....deeper in the center.

          Al

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          • #6
            Re: Escher inspired relief #21

            So, I guess you are stuck doing one of each.

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            • #7
              Re: Escher inspired relief #21

              I think deeper in the center would be better.

              Claude
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              • #8
                Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                LOL! For a real mind altering experience, carve it in a ripple pattern, with alternating crests and troughs as you go deeper in the center......

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                • #9
                  Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                  Maybe a tapered cylinder shaded darker as it deepens to emphasize a whirlpool effect.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                    I have finally gotten the outline of this carving bandsawed. My bandsaw is 180 miles from where I'm carving these days! I have left a big "handle" on the piece to give me something to clamp to the work table. As suggested, the fish will be deeper and smaller in the center. As noted before, this will be 9" square, 2" thick.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                      How do I set the relief levels? In this pattern there are concentric rings of black & white fish, perhaps ten levels if we gave each one a level. As a practical matter, it may be too detailed beyond seven or eight. Do I give each step an equal depth? Or should the steps be graduated because the fish are getting smaller?
                      I have started by incising the line separating the 1st & 2nd levels, shown with the brown line, and began carving the 2nd ring of fish down to the second level. The inner edge of the 2nd ring is shown with a purple line. I will define this edge with a knife incision and angled gouge cuts before I attempt to carve the entire 2nd ring down to its level. This process will be repeated for each ring as I go deeper.
                      On most relief carvings we like to start at the deepest level and work up to the surface, but in this case I'm doing the opposite.
                      If this doesn't work out as rings of fish, it looks like it could be a nice flower!

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                      • #12
                        Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                        Here's the latest progress photo. The separation from ring #1 (surface) and ring #2 is only about 1/8" at this stage. I have already started a similar separation between ring #2 and ring #3. Everything will go deeper together.
                        The yellow cedar is somewhat brittle and I've had to glue back a piece of ring #1, so I have my doubts about fish fins at ring #7.
                        The carving to this point has been with the tools shown: a double edged chip carving knife and a #3-16mm fishtail gouge.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                          Some slight progress - so far I am only sloping each ring of fish down to the next ring to the outside. Only 3-1/2 rings are defined so far, so it can only go down to level 6. After setting the separation, I'll begin to give shape to the fish in each ring.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                            This relief is beginning to define its limits. I now have five concentric rings of rapidly diminishing fish. The outer fish are 6 inches long by 3-1/4 inches, but the ones on the inner ring are 1-1/2 inches by 5/8 inch. The carving gets very difficult as it goes deeper and smaller. I think this piece will be bowl shaped by the time it's finished!
                            The other challenge is the wood - Alaskan Yellow Cedar. It carves like basswood, but much more "splintery." I've already had to glue back pieces that split off.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Escher inspired relief #21

                              Very interesting piece, Phil. I really like it, and can't wait to see the finished product. A project that can't be hurried.
                              Arthur

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