Sunday, May 31, 2009

WIP-Part 3: A spoon to nourish the body & soul

The "Beast" is finished!

Yes, the beast is now complete and prepared to turn the eyes of many an observer for hopefully many years to come. I've decided that I'll most definitely find a special place for it in my kitchen and although it can be used at meal time, I think that I just want to observe it for now.

As you can see in the pictures I decided to go with a green tone for the extensive vein system. I felt that green best represents the life blood of plants or at least it does in my own twisted mind. For the three hearts I went with a red tone of course. I applied thinned down acrylic paint and put on several layers until I was happy with the final look. At first I thought that I'd accent some of the detail work but saw quickly that it wouldn't be necessary since I had rounded all of the raised relief detailing which created a shadowing that gave the spoon a natural accent and feeling of depth.

I then completed the spoon by applying several coats of mineral oil which is food safe and it seems to get a little darker with each application allowing several hours between coats so that it penetrates deeply. Bob Tinsley described an interesting method in the comments of the last posting about a friend who preserves his spoons like this: "He melts the beeswax in a double boiler and submerges the spoon until the air bubbles stop rising. He then removes the spoon and lets it drain." Thanks for this interesting tip Bob and I'd like to do a little experimenting with this method. I bet that wax gives the spoon a nice feel and also a beautiful sheen

You might also notice that the spoon has three significant darkened areas that appear to be knots or where a limb might have once branched out. I don't believe that I mentioned it before but those are artificial knots that I added to the spoon as I was carving it. At the time of carving I wasn't sure if they would end up as knots and several ideas went through my head but yes, they did end up as knots. The pictures I posted don't give a close up view of the knots but I used my Detail Master IV woodburning pen to incorporate a series of old looking growth rings as though a limb had once been there. I think that the knots make the spoon a little more interesting but a lot of creative things could be done with this idea depending on the theme of any particular spoon.

Well, this has been the most delightful project and I'm going to miss having it in the cargo pocket of my pants after a month's habitation! Oh well, I've already got some new ideas and I'll probably be working on a walking stick for my next project. I've already pulled down a fine red maple stick that has been curing for 6 or 7 years now and I'm developing some interesting new ideas for the carving that will certainly make it unique. Stay tuned and I'll keep you up to date when the carving starts!


  1. All I can say is, WOW!!!

    That is an exceptional spoon. The colors are great!


  2. Wow! I knew you were talented but I had no idea. I cherish the walking stick you gave me.