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1 Introduction

A 'cameo' is usually thought of as a piece of jewellery, typically oval in shape, with a portrait in profile carved in low relief on a background of a different colour. The idea is to neatly encapsulates someone, or in this case somedog... 

Well, you can't wear this project (but some one of you will prove me wrong by carving a tiny portrait in boxwood!) and it isn't on a different coloured wood.

But it is a profile in low relief and does try to capture my friend's dog, 'Bones'. And you could cut the profile out, trim accurately to the line and then 'paper sandwich' the project to waste wood for carving. When you've finished, mount the carving on a different coloured of wood and the result will have much more of what we think of as a typical cameo look.

It's a great project for understanding the basic process and practising techniques and grips.The modelling was the trickiest part - but don't let that put you off having a go!

Download: There is no download for this project. Your dog/cat/horse/gerbil will be different to mine! I trust you see what sort of photo you need and why and, from there, find the step-by-step carving straight forward.

Here are a few lessons to fill out what I am doing:

Wood: I'm using simple, light-coloured Limewood (Basswood is similar) to show lights and shadows more. Dark woods tend to mask the differences. My piece was 14" (350mm) wide, grain horizontal - your height to suit - and I carved to a depth of 1/2" (14mm).

Tools: I use (and name in the video) very basic tools for this carving, ones that I use all the time on Woodcarving Workshops and recommend for beginners.



| 21 October 2017 08:31

Denny - Check out the 3 Leaves videos for another step by step description of the approach. It can be amazingly fast.Having said that, Forstener bits are another way to go: yu can get say 3/4 of the way down with them then finish off by ploughing with a gouge

Let's see your cantankerous Yorkie in the gallery!

| 20 October 2017 13:25

Chris, this is such a great series!!!!

I have struggled a bit on lowering backgrounds that are 1/2" or deeper. In the past I used a drill press and forstner bits to do the heavy lifting. I don't have that option at the moment. The process for lowering/leveling/setting in is so informative.

More important is that my wife has a Yorkie that is approaching 20 years old. We thought we were going to lose him about two weeks ago, but he is still hanging in like the cantankerous old man that he is. My mission for the weekend is to take a bunch of photos to get a good profile of him.

Thanks again for this series.

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