Posted by: woodbeecarver   in Carving Projects, Tutorials

Gandolf GandolfGandolf Gandolf Gandolf Gandolf Gandolf Gandolf

The WOOD BEE CARVER often says, “The more you carve the better you carve,” and in that vein suggests that once a carving project is completed there is great value in carving it again and again.  The reason being that since each carving is a learning journey; each carving subject repeated will allow the carver’s creative sub conscious to improve on the previous carving.

Gandalf Study is a good example of this learning process.  The subject of Gandalf is the same but each new carving of that subject will result in subtle changes and innovations ever seeking to make a more profound creative statement.


Gandalf was carved in the Whittle-Carving style of using only knives to shape and detail the final interpretation.  The Gandalf Study used several of the WOOD BEE CARVER Signature knives made by Helvie Knives.  In the series of photographs of the beginning stage of shaping Gandalf, the knives left to right are the # 10 HORNET BEE, # 13 BUMBLE BEE, # 9 KILLER BEE and # 2 SCIMITAR UNIVERSAL.


In the next series of photographs, the knives pictured are left to right # 2 SCIMITAR UNIVERSAL, # 13 BUMBLE BEE and # 7 HONEY BEE Knives with the next stage of shaping the carving.  When it came time to do the detail and finish carving the # 10 HORNET BEE knife was used for the fine and precise slicing strokes.

S Rule Study

Throughout the carving to basic form and the finish detail carving of Gandalf, a slicing and rolling cut was used as often as possible to create the flowing lines that created a sense of movement in the carving.  Guiding this shaping process was following the “S” Rule whereby the S Curve was utilized in the posture, the drapery of the clothing, the flow of the mustache, beard and hair, the S shapes in the walking stick.  Study the descriptive photo highlighting the “S Curve” at several locations and then study the other photographs to discover more uses of the S Rule.

Gandalf was carved out of a three inch by two and half inch by eight inch tall block of basswood.  The coloration was accomplished using the Painting Softly method of artist oil paints thinned with boiled linseed oil and then when the oil finish was dry an application of Deft was applied.

Gandolf              Gandolf              Gandolf Gandolf              Gandolf              Gandolf Gandolf             Gandolf             Gandolf

Every carving project is a learning project and Gandalf continues to teach with more lessons yet to come.  As the Old Carvers Sez, “Keep carving and carving will keep you carving.”

This entry was posted on Friday, November 22nd, 2013 at 3:57 pm and is filed under Carving Projects, Tutorials. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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