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2 Lowering and Levelling

Not much wood to remove so you need to be even more painstaking ('sedulous' is the word I like) than usual, keeping the back plane flat and parallel to the front.

We've done this sort of lowering and levelling many times on Woodcarving Workshops. Check out the 3 Simple Leaves projects and also the Cut of the Carver.

Subscriber download: Low Relief Church Project (PDF)


| 15 June 2019 09:56

Thank you. Your comments really helped. I am enjoying your videos as I try to figure out this new hobby.

| 13 June 2019 10:33

Linda - There are always 2 planes in a relief carving, no matter what the depth. One is the background (plane), the other is the original surface (plane) of the board. These two planes are parallel and all the action, all the perspective, happens in between.
The surface plane is mostly carved away but we still sense it in the final carving as virtual plane connecting all the high spots left from the original surface.
The background plane is parallel to the surface, I guess I could have made the point simpler by saying it like that and leaving the word 'plane' out. It's a way of thinking about relief carvings and how they work. The upshot is that what we leave as sky here can't slope backwards; we take a consistent depth from the surface (plane) of the wood.

I'm afraid it's not possible to give you a side view now; the carving has long gone into the world. But thank you very much for spotting my mistake! I say in the previous video, that the depth was 1/2in. This was actually the thickness of the wood. The depth I marked down from the surface was 1/4in. 6mm. So there lies the background (sky, and thus all the wood we have to play with. Apologies for the confusion. I've now written a correction under the video.

| 12 June 2019 18:15

How much did you lower the background? I am not clear on what you meant by two plains in the carving. Are you saying both the area above the church and below the church should be lowered the same amount? Do you lower it to the ½ inch line you scored on the wood? A side view of the finished carving might help to clarify how much to lower the background.

| 10 October 2017 17:31

Joseph - There are no hard and fast rules but normally you line in relief carvings that are fairly shallow, down to a depth where the corners of the V tool still clear the surface. In this carving I was a little deeper. But you could line in, then repeat until you get the depth you want.

| 09 October 2017 01:43

So why wouldn't I want to line in with a V tool first?

| 23 July 2015 15:14

Pete - You could indeed start with the V tool. I usually reserve that for something a bit shallower, where I'd go round the subject once. In this case I treated the background as a higher relief and went straight into lowering the background, taking care not to run into the church. I use the V tool as you suggest later in the work when the change of plane is a lot shallower.

| 22 July 2015 16:46

I'm sure the reason is obvious Chris, but, I wondered why you did not use the usual V tool to 'draw' the outline first. Looks a lovely little village church by the way. When I was young we used to go to one very similar, except it had a thatched roof, which I think is the only one I've ever seen.

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