Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Carving "Thunderbolt" :Finishing up the legs and muscles

He’s starting to look like a horse now, with the muscle groups indicated. I spent quite a bit of time getting the spacing better between the legs and defining the groups of muscles around the legs. A technique I like is to carve the lines and then to sand them so that you get a flowing muscle look instead of something defined by a line cut into the surface. I like to use my veiners for this and then carve or sand the edges back up to the center. Here are a few pictures.

When carving different things, it is sometimes helpful to have a model or something to “go by” as an example. I sometimes do clay or other types of models to work out my designs and I metioned before about researching and gathering pictures. But it can also be helpful to have a 3 dimensional example. I have a small plastic horse that I have used before in other carvings, just a toy, but with enough realistic features to really be quite helpful. You can find quite realistic toys of all sorts of animals that can be very helpful in carving.

When I completed the muscles, I started blocking out the saddle. It is very important to my design to have movement in the legs of the rider, so it is more critical to get him seated properly before working much on the saddle. You will not really see many details of the saddle when he is riding and I probably won’t even carve stirrups. Real bronc busters don’t use stirrups! I had to carve quite a bit away on the sides to get his legs to swinging. You can see the dowel in the picture above that will attach him to the saddle. Here is a picture of how he is sitting so far.

Now that I have him sitting properly, I can finish the saddle and blankets and such, before worrying about attaching the head. Thanks for looking!

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