Experts say that woodcarving is more than 2000 years old. Ancient people had to make use of stones, shells, and even the teeth and tusks of animals to shape wood. Nowadays, woodcarvers continue to carve a name in the ranks of the finest in the craft. Wood sculptors can turn any lifeless wood into life-like animal sculptures. Many people often wonder how to do wood carving animals. Let’s find out!
Relief Carving a Cat
Let us know first the kind of sculpture we’ll expect in relief carving before learning how to do wood carving animals. In relief carving, the image is carved in three dimensions and has a flat back. It may be classified as high or medium relief depending on the degree of projection.
Step-by-step Relief Carving of a Cat
To be able to know how to do wood carving animals, such as a cat, we need to prepare the following tools:
- Transfer paper
- Carving knife
- Carving tools
- Rotary carving unit
- A pillar drill that holds a rotary carving unit or a vertical milling machine (optional)
- Rotary burrs and cutters
- Block of wood, in this case, a pear
Now, it’s time for us to learn the step-by-step tutorial on how to do wood carving animals.
- Step 1 – To carve, prepare a section of a pear. Draw your pattern directly onto your block. You can also take a photo and print it out to scale. Lay transfer paper onto the block of wood, and then place your photo over the transfer paper. Trace your print out.
- Step 2 – Start cutting around the outline of the cat. It is easy to control the shape if you’re using a knife. The outline cut of the image should incline into the blank.
- Step 3 – Using a small deep-fluted gouge. Cut from 10mm away from your knife cut. You should now be able to see the cat set apart from the background.
- Step 4 – Clean up the outline shavings and chips using a small knife. Begin to undercut the cat image at a small angle.
- Step 5 – You can use hand tools or a hand-held rotary carving unit. In this case, we are using a vertical milling machine. You can now achieve the intricate details you need to acquire your desired depth.
- Step 6 – To remove excess volume, use a large cutter to create the fur volume.
- Step 7 – Cut away the parts of the background slowly and carefully by using a small flat chisel.
- Step 8 – Using a small cutter, create the cat’s fur and cut away any excess volume using a large cutter. You can now cut the large folds in the cat’s back and work on the ears, cheeks, and forehead. Make sure to have lots of patience and attention in this particular step.
- Step 9 – Clean up the cat’s outline by using a small section of abrasive. Sand all the separate details on the nose. You can now display your wood-carved cat by hanging it on your wall!
The Finest Craft
Wood carving animals for beginners is a craft that can help you have a deeper feeling and respect towards nature and the wild. It is indeed the finest craft! Learn more wood carving tips here!