Archive - February 2012
24 February 2012
We are well underway with issue 126 and are implementing the changes you have requested. I do hope you like what's coming and I am sure that you will let me know your thoughts once you have that issue. Lots of articles have been commissioned in response to your requests so whatever you see in issue 126 is only the tip of the iceberg so to speak. I want to thank you all for your much-valued input in the magazine. You interaction and willingness to share and communicate ideas certainly helps my job no end. Do keep your ideas coming.
The gradual changes we go through in our chosen hobbies or professions are delightful to see. We start off by trying to do this or that to learn as much as possible and then start to become more confident, tackling ever more difficult pieces of work in order to learn new techniques and to develop and hone — no pun intended — our skills further. But there are times when we get a little frustrated with what we are doing and think that we have not progressed much at all. It is times like this that it is wise to look back at a record of what we have made from the very beginning and compare it with what we are producing now. It is always a shock when I do this and see that there has been a radical development, albeit something that has happened over many years. My techniques have certainly progressed and the work I am producing now is very much improved and different from what I started making way back when I started.
Yes I can have those days in the workshop when everything that can go wrong, does and I can’t see the wood from the trees. I know I am not the only one that has these days, but if handled correctly, they can highlight that it is just an off day and we move on and develop all of the time. The key for me is to always have fun, it makes learning so much easier; the time whizzes by.
Do let me know what you have been making and we will do our best to get it in the magazine.Contact Mark Baker
16 February 2012
You may have noticed I've borrowed some inspiration from the great David Bowie for the title of this blog. The blog itself is always easy to write, but the title can warrant more trepidation. As Mark has already mentioned, we’re making a few changes at Woodcarving. They’re only slight changes and are solely intended to improve your – our readers' – enjoyment of the magazine, but hopefully they won’t go unnoticed. Things like making font more visible and colours stand out more, making projects easier to follow and including more articles that celebrate the woodcarving community are changes we feel are both important and exciting.
Community is, in fact, an area we intend to focus upon more and more in future issues of Woodcarving with more time given to explore the many carving clubs in England and overseas and extra focus on our readers and the way they carve. So if you're a member of a carving club, no matter how long you've been established or how many members you have, contact us and we can feature you in the magazine. Or if you've done some carvings recently and you'd like us to feature them on our forum pages, email them over to me. It’s a really good feeling to open my emails in the mornings and have a few messages from readers sending me their work, their ideas and often encouragement; it helps me fill the forum pages of the magazine with interesting and accomplished carvings and gives me an idea of what sort of things you all get up to.
I am eagerly awaiting Woodcarving, issue 125 to hit the shops! It is the first magazine I have fully contributed to as the deputy editor and I’m very pleased with the outcome. I particularly enjoyed visiting and interviewing John Surplice; a man with a lot of love for wood in its many incarnations. It’s a great issue – packed full of projects, techniques, features and news – and one I’m sure you all will enjoy.
I know Mark often mentions this in his blog and I am keen to reiterate it: please do write to us, letting us know what you’d like to see. After all, it’s your magazine.
Happy carvingContact Miriam Bentham
07 February 2012
I am working on an article about power carving at the moment and I'm having a lot of fun with it. I power carve a lot and, so it seems, are many others. It is one of the areas that is quickly increasing in popularity. It seems the bird-carving fraternity took to it very quickly and then it has been taken up by many others people thereafter. Let's face it - it is not just used by carvers; you have the jewellers, the metal workers, engineers, model makers, stoneworkers and many more who enjoy and capitalise on the benefits of this working method.
The Saburr power carving wheel range (PHOTOGRAPH BY GMC/ANTHONY BAILEY)
If you do a quick search on the subject you will quickly see how many types of cutter there are available for various types of material. There are myriad products in this section of the market to suit all types of use and budgets, so the ability to obtain items is quite an easy process.
Power carving can be used – with the correct type of cutters and blades as appropriate — to quickly shape a piece of or — with a change of cutter or blade — be capable of the most delicate of detailing jobs. I am not saying that it is a cure all approach to carving, but it is a route that has a lot of merit for exploration.
Let me know if this is a process you are using regularly even for small jobs and why you are using this over traditional hand-carving techniques.
Also, don't forget to enter the International Woodcarver of the Year competition.Contact Mark Baker
Could you be the International Woodcarver of the Year 2012?
03 February 2012
Have you entered our Woodcarver of the Year competition yet? This year's competition is bigger and there are bigger prizes up for grabs. You can only enter it via the website and as with any competition, you have to enter in or to be in with a chance of winning one of the many fabulous prizes.
You will be able to find more information regarding entry by clicking here and you will find detailed instructions on how to enter, including how to prepare and upload your image.
Below you will see some of the winning entries from last year's competition. Good luck!
Images, from top to bottom:
1. In the Round, gold winner: ‘Archbishop’ by Canon Dr Bill Merrington. Dorset, UK
2. Painted, gold winner: ‘A Snail in the Bill is Worth Two in the Bush’ by Steven Preston. East Sussex, UK
3. Relief, gold winner: ‘The Good, The Bad and The Ugly,’ by Peter Paces. Surrey, UK
(ALL PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF THE MAKERS)Contact Mark Baker