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Chalcedony Pendant - First Carving

David G

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I have been involved in lapidary for a few years but always considered carving beyond me. Inspired by Michael B, Kurt and others awesome hard stone work, I embarked on,my own. Janel thank you for your kind advice, I decided to leave this one alone and try variations on the next one, otherwise i risk grinding it out of existence, and i have stayed true to the original intent.


The stone is dendritic chalcedony from Western Australia and comes from one of the chrysoprase deposits, some of the slabs grade from clear chalcedony to white chalcedony to green chysoprase all in the one slab, this stuff is clear to white. The stone is very hard, almost flawless and takes a mirror polish. And most pleasingly it withstood all of my heavy handed treatment without breaking.


The original design was simpler but the stone called for more and I could not resist trying to figure out how to tuck one side under the other. I am happy with the design though my wife who is a student of design at the College of Fine Arts was critical along the lines of me lacking a clear design objective and the piece (at least originally) being unclear whether it was feminine or masculine.


My purpose in starting the carving was to have a play and learn how to use my new Dremel to get various shapes. Apart from the diamond bits on the Dremel which were hard to control, all the internal curves were done by hand with shaped paddle pop sticks, skewers and silicon carbide paper (one atom at a time it seemed - did I mention this stuff is hard?). I learn't a lot on this and now realise that I have about 900 times more to learn.


It would not win any competitions (unlike Michael B), while I am very happy with the overall shape and it looks fantastic at first glance and the polish is spectacular, however some of the individual cures if followed in the light, taper and bump in ways they should not.


Thank you to everyone who has inspired me, I now have new found respect for your craftsmanship and persistence. I thought you were amazing before, now I know you are amazing. Now to choose from a dozen new ideas for the next one.













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