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Janel

Apple Blossom and Peeper

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Sketches help place the parts, the photos and my drawings from spring help fill in the detail. This is a great piece of French Boxwood. Thanks Debbie. It is a really hard piece of wood and nice for carving! I am actually farther along tonight, but did not take a photo of it when I quit.

 

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Since I don't do extensive drawings or models, this is more like a "what's on your bench" addition to this forum area. I'll see if I can do a scan of my apple sketches next week. My tools eventually find some order, but never seem to stay lined up. I concentrate so deeply on what I am doing, I don't pay too much attention to where the tools go. Finding them sometimes is tricky, even in the small area they occupy! It is fun to be back at the bench!

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I'm looking forward to seeing it unfold. Hey Janel, what is the substance you use to set your work in while carving it. It looks like plasticine or bluetac? It obviously doesn't stain your work or I guess you'd not be using it??

 

Simon

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Hi Simon,

 

Thanks. I think it is an Elmer's product. It is what I call - poster tacky sticky stuff - I have seen it in yellow and blue. I prefer the white for the neutral color. It goes to gray as it collects particles from carving. It helps.

 

I have not done a ryusa style carving before, so I am having lots of questions as I get into further definition. Kinda fun!

 

Janel

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Janel,

You're braver than I am, I have never tried a ryusa style netsuke before, I keep imagining just as I'm finishing it colapses on me and breaks into a hundred pieses. I am enjoying watching how you progress with that boxwood. It does have enought strength for such a carving, maybe after watching you I will try carving a ryusa out of a piece of it, but I was also thinking maybe the european pear I have. I just have to get the courage to try a ryusa! Yours looks great so far!

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Hi Debbie,

 

I think I won't be aiming for fragile and thin this time. If it were to actually end up being used, it would have to have some strength. I cut the wood across the branch diameter, so the faces, when on either side of the hollow, will have the grain standing on end, and I think that won't have the strength of the long fibers running across it. I wonder if most ryusa from the past were ivory rather than wood.

 

Janel

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Janel

I do beleave you are right, I don't recall ever seeing one in any thing but ivory. But if you were to cut your blank from the side of the branch to have the grain run from side to side that might work with a close grain wood as the boxwood or the pear and maybe the european beech that seems not to have a grain at all. Now I'll have to try it and wee what I can accomplist.

Debbie

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Hmm, that European beech sounds interesting. Is it very hard or dense?

 

Natasha Popova has been carving ryusa in boxwood recently. Go HERE to see her work.

 

Since I am headed to a show in April, I have applied in wood, so I have to focus on wood pieces for the next two months, hence the boxwood for the ryusa.

 

Janel

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Janel,

She carved it like I said, the grain of the wood goes from side to side, that is why it has to strength to be carved thin.

As far as the beech, I'll send you some, I got it at a great deal and I don't know what to do with all of it. I just mentioned to a friend I had heard european beech was traditionally used as mallets the next thing I know he sent me some. I might as well share the wealth. It is hard, but a different typ of hard than boxwood, I don't know how to explain, but it is hard. It is a beautiful wood and takes a high polish easy and well. Absorption is not good, almost impossible to dye or color, paint just lays on the top, I have only found one way to get it to take a tint. I dehydrate the color ink or mixture of colors I want to use the rehydrate with naptha or ethanol and test the color on a piece of scrap piece to get the desired results.

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Hi Janel,

I think this piece will beautiful - thanks for sharing so early in the process.

I've thought of doing a ryusa myself as it seems it would be the closest to the style of carving I've been doing. I was thinking of using ebony - I've carved some very thin piercings for sound holes in music boxes before and they seemed very strong. Excuse my ignorance, but could you tell me the parameters of form for a ryusa - dimensions, aspects of hollowness etc.?

 

Thanks,

Magnus

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Magnus,

I am not sure of the exact required measurements, But what I've seen seems to to be about 2-2.5 inches in diameter and about one inch thick, this is only from what I've seen. Maybe knows more.

I have started one today and it is alittle over 2 inches in diameter and will be .75 inches thick.

I hope this helps you.

Debbie

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Magnus,

I forgot the hollowness, I beleave you remove everything that doesn't belong, in other words, you make a flattened ball of your subject matter so that the inside has nothing in it.

I am not an expert on the ryusa netsuke I just study what I find and that seems to be what I've seen. Hopefully Janel will be able to help you further.

Debbie

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1.5 to 2" diameter, 0.5" depth, on the smaller end of the spectrum. The size for netsuke was sometimes related to the client who commissioned the piece, larger, for larger person using the netsuke. I really don't know if there is an exact size, though 2" or less, and on the thin side of .75" to .5" thick. Yes, a hollow space inside. Natasha carves remarkable pieces, though I don't know if any would be used, regarding the open nature of the carving. Remarkably, she carves four faces, both inside faces and both outside faces. I am awed by what she is able to do! I also do not know what might be the customary cord attachment process. She describes an internal loop carved across from the himotoshi, or cord hole. My first one will have a branch as a cord loop, so no inside carving on mine, as far I know now.

 

Janel

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I went mining tonight. I stopped because I was tired and did not want to make a mistake. There is a lot left to do yet with details, toes, eyes, textures, inlays? and hollowing.

 

417_w.jpg

 

Janel

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I went mining tonight. I stopped because I was tired and did not want to make a mistake. There is a lot left to do yet with details, toes, eyes, textures, inlays? and hollowing.

 

post-2-1202620877.jpg

 

Janel

 

 

Janel

It looks beautiful, you are doing a beautiful job. What are you useing in 'mining' to explore the insides.

Debbie

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I am using the NSK with a little ball shaped cutter now to get the main stuff out as I am able. Will use a smaller ball end in the smaller places. Then who knows what will work after that? Like Simon F found, as I am soon to discover, there may not be enough access points to do it from either side. We'll see! New tools ideas are wafting in the breezes...

 

Thanks for the positive remarks. Things look questionable until the piece begins to show it's adult potential. The adolescent balls of the buds looked pretty boring before their petals were described.

 

I remain hopeful for a good next few days with this one!

 

Janel

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I am using the NSK with a little ball shaped cutter now to get the main stuff out as I am able. Will use a smaller ball end in the smaller places. Then who knows what will work after that? Like Simon F found, as I am soon to discover, there may not be enough access points to do it from either side. We'll see! New tools ideas are wafting in the breezes...

 

Thanks for the positive remarks. Things look questionable until the piece begins to show it's adult potential. The adolescent balls of the buds looked pretty boring before their petals were described.

 

I remain hopeful for a good next few days with this one!

 

Janel

 

 

Hi Janel

 

Just a little note to say I'm having some success with a leather working needle inserted into my foredom hand-piece with the point end in the chuck. Then I'm using the eye to insert some sandpaper in, and using it like a split mandrel. If you can't picture this I'll send a photo. But it seems to be working pretty well. Also you mentioned using a bendable wire with paper on the end. I tried this - some medium wire flattened out at the end a little and using some contact glue sticking a little paper to it. It is easy to bend to the angle you want. the wire can be held in a pin vice.

 

Well, back to my bench...

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Resourceful mind you have there! Thanks for sharing. I've got the needles as part of my tool set, but never imagined this use for them.

 

Janel

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Hi, Janel! At last I'm here! :D The process of getting "log in" was very long! But I've done!

Thank You for the photos of your first Ryusa! I'm sure it'll be amazing masterpiece! I like it very much!

You asked about a loop for cord, shall I send a couple of my photos to You?

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Hi Natasha! I am glad that you succeeded getting logged in again!

 

***If any reader is having difficulty with logging in, please find a way to write to the admin at the domain name for this forum, thecarvingpath.net and I will try to help you.***

 

Amazing masterpiece, I don't think so. I am not going to finish the interior to perfection, I just don't have the tools or time (I hate to say that!) to reach and smooth or carve the interior to meaningful beauty. There, I said it. The outside will be very enjoyable though. In another day or so I will post photos again. The details are being added, and then the eyes for the frog will need doing. Consideration for the finish treatment is also on my mind, so such tests will also take place.

 

Photos? Yes, I like photos! Very helpful for understanding... I wonder, is the loop inside the ryusa something you found when doing research on the netsuke style?

 

Janel

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I'm looking forward to seeing how you finish this one off too Janel. Will you go for colours with the realistic approach or more for more traditional stains? Have you come to any conclusions about the oil paint problems? The problem with getting light, or white, colours is one I'm intrigued with. There was a questions asked by someone about the pale colour on one of Cornel Schneider's lizard netsukes - was it bleached? What will you do with the blossoms?

 

S

ps along with the others I also think that your carving has captured that very 'appleness' in the twigs too. :D

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Well, this looks much like the earlier set of front/back images, but I have put in some hours. Many hours on unseen inside work, and that inside is still not pleasing... I don't know if I have the tools that it takes to do the work that I wish could be done. I am currently doing more detail adjustments, sanding here and there, starting with the flower petals.

 

Blowing up the 1.5 inch diameter is really disheartening! I see so much that I want to work on, and didn't know it yet. I must remember to just look at the piece with my regular glasses on and know what is and is not important I guess, if I can't see it, you can' either, right?

 

About the color vs. no color, I am not there yet with that decision.

 

Janel

 

417_w2.jpg

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Hi Janel,

I think your piece looks great enlarged to 4" on my screen. I had a friend who was a gem engraver and he worked under fairly low magnification. He said that too much detail was wasted and also detracted from the piece when seen with the naked eye which was how the piece was normally viewed.

Dick

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