Wood carving is an artwork, which is normally done as a hobby, or full time job, all focusing to express the creativity of craftsmen. Since historical times, human beings carved utensils, instruments, tools, and other items from wood. Today, several items like ornaments, toys, sculptures, decorations, figurines, and many more can be carved from wood. Indeed, it is an activity that started many years ago, but has been embraced by a large portion of population even today. Most craftsmen prefer to use wood because it is malleable, and also can be carved easily.
Choosing the Right Wood for Carving
The type of wood that you select would have the final bearing of the object you carve. The stronger part of the wood is the grain, and when you work around this part, you will get more brittle results. Before you decide where to start carving, you should prepare the most intricate pieces, which you will be using.
When carving an item with very tiny or detailed pieces, it is advisable to use hardwoods, since they are sturdy even after being carved to tiny degrees. In this case, some common wood that wood deliver the results you need include sycamore, apple, plum, Italian walnut and pear.
For any other wood carving which does not require fine pieces, you can use wood from mahogany, chestnut, American walnut, basswood, teak and Tupelo. These are the most popular types of hardwoods that are easy to work with. Softwoods can be carved easily, but they are lack longevity like that of hardwoods.
Starting you Wood Carving Work
After selecting the type of wood to use, you should start by sketching the item you want to carve. This can be done on both sides of your piece, the front and the back. The sketch would help you to shape the object you’re about to carve. Some woodcarvers use photographs, while others rely on their memory to carve.
You should have all relevant wood carving tools that you may need in this work. The artistic impression of what you want to carve, and the wood you want to use would largely determine the types of tools to use. Use the right carving tool for the right purpose to avoid damaging your object. Tools like chisels, gouges, rasp, files, cutters, engravers, carving knives and sanders are commonly used for carving.
Painting your Wood Carving
You will need things like paintbrushes, paints, sandpaper, sealant, pencil and towel to complete the carving. You need to smoothen the carving using sandpaper, and remove all loose pieces using a towel. Using a pencil, you can sketch areas that you need to paint using different colors. Painting the wood carving is meant to give it beautiful appearance and outlook. Also, it gives the carving the natural appearance, as most of them are painted using their respective natural colors. Sealant would be the last thing to apply on your wood carving in order to prevent warping of the wood, and flaking of the paint.