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Carving on the Edge Festival 2017

Carving on the Edge Festival 2017, in Tofino, BC

A special year 2017, setting aside some space and encouragement for women carvers. It is after all, a male dominated field. We usually hang out away from the limelight, doing what we like to do, make chips.

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Carving on the Edge Festival 2016

Carving on the Edge Festival 2016, In Tofino, BC, Canada

Carving on the Edge Festival 2016, a month ago already. It was a blast again. Meeting with friends and fellow carvers. Showing our creations in the gallery. Doing demonstrations for the people coming to the festival. Attending or giving workshops and presentations. Ten days of immersion in the art of carving. Come next year!

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How many Raven masks?

, ©2014 Champagne

Raven Masks

Since I first started carving, I seem to have shaped quite a few raven masks. I’ve put together a collection of the photos.

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La grosse ventouse mask

La grosse ventouse, mask by Francine Champagne

Ventouse Mask Story

It just sound better in French, rather than the Big Suction Cup Woman. Sounds like “Vaw-tooz”. I’ve carved two of theses creatures. They still haunt me.

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Showing 2 masks at the Hatch Gallery

My Serene Moon Mask was renamed Lai Tsi, a Chinese Eck Master

Eck Master Moon and Serene Moon, a.k.a. Lai Tsi Mask

Participating in the Eckankar Regional Seminar this weekend at UBC, University of British Columbia. I will be showing two masks, Eck Master Moon and Serene Moon. Read more…

Many carved plaques in progress

The spiraling wave is being carved to cap a king post above a huge beam. The original design I wanted to use was the line of snoozing dogs. But the post is far up and not really well lit. So in fact it’s a waste to place something so detailed all the way up there. I simplified a repeating pattern instead, something similar to the screen printed waves on a farmhouse floor I did years back.

carving-plaques

Check out the nice Brodie Blade!

More carved spoons

It’s sort of like switching from a film camera to a digital camera. Instant gratification. Doesn’t take long to see the result when you carve a spoon. Not like a large mask, requiring many hours of labour before you see the final piece. There are always a few spoons hanging around the shop, in various degrees of completion. Haischtuup Robinson Cook, a carver and accomplished woodworker gave a spoon carving workshop at the Carving on the Edge festival in Tofino, BC. The spoon below was based on a design by Henry Nolla.

Raven Spoon on alder plaque, f.Champagne

Raven Spoon on alder plaque, f.Champagne

Spoon carving only required a few good tools, and no workshop at all. It is also appreciated (i think?) by family and friends.

The seem to get snatched up quickly.

They seem to get snatched up quickly.

All shapes and sizes, a great big spatula for retrieving pizza, or a weird round one for flipping quesadillas.

All shapes and sizes, a great big spatula for retrieving pizza, or a weird round one for flipping quesadillas.

spoon-tools

A side gouge is handy for the inside of the bowl, or a tiny crooked knife. Possibly a straight blade for the handle and outside of the bowl.

Most of the work can be done with a crooked knife.

Most of the work can be done with a crooked knife.

Woodburning can add detail to your spoon.

Woodburning can add detail to your spoon.

Whatever you do. Have fun!

Burnished Raven Man Mask

My latest Raven/Man mask; I have done many over the years. All seem to fly away quickly. A large bone crest coming down into a human nose. Don’t know why I started carving them, there must be a story still to be discovered. This latest is a series of 3 masks, western red cedar of course. When the wood is fresh and the knives sharp, it is a pleasure to carve this character.  I follow subtle internal hints to change its form and it always ends up different.

Raven Man mask, the fourth one I have carved

Raven Man mask, the fourth one I have carved

Raven Man mask, the fifth, with a nice curve in the shape of the lips

Raven Man mask, the fifth, with a nice curve in the shape of the lips

And the latest one, tiny and thin.

Raven Man mask, the sixth, sporting some hair beads

Raven Man mask, the sixth, sporting some hair beads

Just before the paint and burnish step, it did for a little while have me recall the Ellen Neel mask.

Raven Man mask, the fourth one I have carved

Raven Man mask, prior to painting and burnishing the surface

I was always fascinated by Ellen Neel’s Dzonokwa mask. Simple elegant volumes, curved surfaces, minimalism to get the idea of the character across to the viewer. If you are fortunate enough to have seen the dance or know the story, you do recognize her right away. And the surface finish, accentuating the grain in the wood. Superb.

Ellen Neel's Dzonukwa mask

Ellen Neel’s Dzonukwa mask

 

 

 

Carving a line of snoozing dogs

Drew a slew of these dog packs. A line symmetry system instead of a plane symmetry system. Built on a vertical stack of glide reflected dogs. Peacefully snoring, on her back, on her couch, all fours up in the air, her tail draped over the lower dog; the white tail tip is a clue. Takes a while to fully comprehend the construction. Will take a bit of effort to carve it as well.

Snoring Dogs line tessellation by Francine Champagne, ©2015 — Symétruc de chiens ronflants

Snoring Dogs line tessellation by Francine Champagne, ©2015 — Symétruc de chiens ronflants

Here’s a photo with the design copied onto the alder plank, and a few perimeter cuts. Should be interesting once it’s all done. Might even do a bit of wood burning to accents parts.

Snoring Dogs line tessellation by Francine Champagne, ©2015 — Symétruc de chiens ronflants

Snoring Dogs line tessellation by Francine Champagne, ©2015 — Symétruc de chiens ronflants

 

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