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Relief Carving Escher's "Bond of Union"

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  • #31
    Progress is slow. It is important to get the facial features at the right level, angle, and size. The background is still only 1/2 inch deep in the middle. I'm about satisfied with the number of floating hearts and spheres, but their actual depth will be adjusted. Next: shaping the woman's ear and hair - positioning the man's eyes and nose.

    The progress on this carving may slow even more. Later this week I'm singing in a (barbershop) chorus contest. Then we plan to spend 2-1/2 months in Washington state (Bainbridge Island). I will take this piece and my tools, but there may be distractions. LOL



    • #32
      Here is the progress since arriving at Bainbridge Island. Don't see much do you?

      Well, if you look closely and compare with the previous photos, there's a little shape to the woman's lips and the right side of the man's neck. Oh, and the photo is illuminated by Washington sun rather than California sun. No difference, you say? It keeps things light much later in the evening.



      • #33
        And isn't it nice to have sunshine in the US Pacific Northwest for a change!


        • #34
          We've had wonderful weather since our arrival, and no rain is predicted for the next week.

          Here is the progress for a day - a little more shaping of the man's head. Photo #2 is the same with the chips removed.



          • #35
            Lookin' good, Phil!


            • #36
              While rounding the shape of the two heads it became clear that I'd have to deal with the one place where the head bands cross. This is similar to the "over & under" crossing of Celtic knot patterns - of course this is only one crossing. After getting the facial contours right, I'll probably give texture to the hair, mustache, and beard. Then, cut everything to ribbons. .

              For those just joining this thread: This is a "challenge carving" to make a relief of Escher's "Bond of Union" - 1-1/4" x 15" x 12" basswood


              Last edited by pallin; 05-30-2017, 02:54 PM. Reason: spelling, link


              • #37
                This is the photo that dropped out of the previous posting (#36)



                • #38
                  The next phase of this carving is shaping the ears - one for the woman and one for the man. It's necessary to study some real ears because the ones in the design are partly cut away. I'm beginning to feel it will be tough to cut these two heads to ribbons after spending hours making them look pretty and complete!



                  • #39
                    Some of you may be wondering why anyone would want to do this design as a relief carving, or other form of woodworking. Here is a link to the work of an amazing young man in Italy that has done this design as marquetry (wood inlay):
                    This is Daniele Parasecolo who collaborated with me to produce a marquetry/relief version of "Reptiles." We met quite accidentally when I was visiting his town in the Umbria Province.


                    • #40
                      Thanks for the post, Another 3-D thinker, and Carver
                      . . .JoeB


                      • #41
                        Relief depth - One of the details to think about at this stage in the carving is how deep to go with each part of the carving. As a general rule a relief should not go much beyond half of the wood thickness. Why? Because you risk warping and cracking. So far the deepest parts of this carving are only 1/2" deep and the basswood is 1-1/4" thick. I like to keep some depth in reserve in case I have to correct an error in the shape of some part. I could still carve away the eyes and re-do them at this stage! The depth of most of the spheres & hearts are still tbd.
                        I would also point out that carving these faces in relief is very different from carving faces on caricatures or wood spirits. The cheeks are only 1/8" deeper than the nose. The noses are tilted in relation to the viewer, so the more I undercut the nose profile the deeper it appears.



                        • #42
                          All good info,
                          . . .JoeB