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Carvers' Brushes

"They also serve, who stand and wait..."

Carving brushes - trivial? No! They have many important purposes in the workshop and should be teated with a similar respect to you carving tools. Here are 4 that I keep near me. One of them goes right back to when I first started carving.


| 12 March 2012 16:30

Jonathan - good idea but you do have to stand back and protect your eyes as well as your lungs! Carvers just blow shavings away - close your eyes when you do. You can see/hear me puffing away in some of the lessons. For deep crevices I grab a straw!

| 11 March 2012 01:30

Hi Chris,
I love the website! With regard to brushes I also have several, but when doing some very deep relief work about 1 year ago I discoved what I call the airbrush. It is simply a can of the compressed air that you buy to clean the computer. It cleans out deep areas nicely! When I first used it, I thought I was cheating---then I remembered exactly what you said above when I took your class in Maine. Now I always have it around. My only word of warning is not to use it on sawdust without respiratory protection--------Jonathan Walter

| 05 January 2012 09:49

John - I try not to think in those terms: 'cheating', or 'right' or 'wrong', Rather, 'If I do such-and-such I get this result or effect. If I do something else, then I get another result, or I've enjoyed or not enjoyed the work.' We are all have different and YOU have to decide yourself what your carving (process) is like, and what effects you want. On the whole, I love working directly with my hands and traditional carving tools, and this includes rasps, but sometimes a power tool is the (right) one for the job, saving me a lot of time or giving me the effect I want and I'm happy to use it. So, stay loose, enjoy your carving and don't take any of this stuff too seriously!

| 29 December 2011 13:53

Hi Chris, I am just starting out with woodcarving, loads of books, few tools, plenty of ideas, I am going to start soon!! I was wondering about your views on power carving, I am not even keen on the use of rasp's, seems like cheating a bit, what do you think?
John Booth - Cornwall

| 16 April 2011 12:28

As a beginner, this is the kind of information that is invaluable, even though very simple. Reminds me of ski instruction. Without the instruction in the beginning, a skier never really recovers from bad habits in the future he acquires with a "bad start". Thanks for the little insights in each of your video clips. Priceless. Like having you in my shop.

| 09 April 2011 13:46

Love the milton quote. For some reason I always want to attribute that one to John Donne. Sometimes I am disappointed that I cannot do as much as I'd like (only so many hours in the day), but I have to remember we are only expected to use well what we have been given and fulfill the role we have been allotted.

| 07 April 2011 01:37

Chris - you forgot to mention the importance of dedicating a new clean brush to use only on the carving - I remember too well the hard time you gave me for using my old dustpan brush ;-) Colin

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