What are the 5 points to Consider for Wood Carving?

5 Things to consider

The wood carving looks very attractive or adorable to the eyes. Still, it is a complicated task to change the shape of using dangerous and pointed tools. If you are a beginner and crazy about knowing wood carving as an expert, then you are in a perfect place.

I am listed down some supreme or ruling things you have to consider before taking the wood carving.

1.      Wood type

After that know exceptionally well about the wood carving, the first thing to consider is the type of wood as I mentioned in detail above, what type of wood is used for which type of wood carving.

If you want to do some chip carving, you should use a hardwood like cherry, or if you are thinking about whittling, you can start work on softwood like basswood.

2.      Size

After considering the type of wood, the next level is to select the wood size according to your project. Size is significant for starting the wood carving.

3.      Correct use of tools

If you don’t know the correct use of tools, then the idea of wood carving should be taken out of your mind. Different tools have their specification.

4.      Handle the tools

If you know how to use tools, then move forward. The next important thing that you have to consider Is to handle the tools. You will know how to hold the tools properly. It will make the carving process more manageable and safer.

Suppose you are thinking about using a chainsaw. You can use it; you have a secure and powerful grip on it. The most important thing is that you have focus all of your attention on your work while using tools. If your attention diverts, you may damage the piece or even yourself.

5.      Usage of gloves

If you want to prevent yourself from an accident, you have to use gloves. Gloves are very beneficial for workers, especially those who spend all of their time between dangerous weapons. They also help you to grip your piece of wood or tools tightly.

Especial type of gloves for woodcarvers are easily available in the market.

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What is wood carving?

Carving is one of the oldest art of humankind. This is one of the art that has been around for centuries. This art dates back to the old stone age as understood in Asia, Africa, and Europe. The oldest carve wooden sculpture was found in Russia in 1894. Many of the years ago, woods are used for making tools for building houses, and the primary use of wood is that it is used for burning purposes. As a man progressed, so did how the wood was used.

For defining woodcarving, it is the activity of taking wood off-lying with tools (used to carve woods like chisels and knives) and creating furniture, ornaments, or decoration pieces. In short, wood carving is the method to carve wood into a unique and attractive shape.

 However, woodcarving is one of the most popular and exciting hobbies that any person can start. It don,t demands the high fashion studio and the most expensive tools to start this work. The wood carving looks very attractive, but it is very complicated to change the wood piece into another shape totally.

Suppose you are a beginner and want to start this stunning and adorable work as a hobby. Please don’t stop reading this article because I will give you some essential tips and details about the wood carving.

Types of wood carving

While when we talk about the types of wood carving, it sounds like a straight forward discipline. But actually, there are lot of ways that you can change the shape of the wood according to your need. However, different styles are made for different peoples. Likewise, styles depend on the personability. It’s good to exert influence on which style sounds perfect with your abilities.

After getting the idea of wood carving now, it’s time to learn about the different wood carving types.

1.      Relief carving

relief carving of a battle scene
Relief carving of a battle scene

Relief carving is a very admired and prominent carving in earlier centuries. And examples of this carving date back to Greece and Rome. We can make sculptors with woods, but stones and ivory are essential elements that relief carving is held on. Relief carving requires solid wood to make sculptors.

We have to use sharp tools for this type of wood carving (like knives, chisels, gauges, V-shaped blade, or many more). The most important thing is that these tools are not for beginners because they are very sharp-edged and splintery.

The technique that the ancient peoples are used for relief carving is, in the beginning; first, they map out their imagination on the wood then start shaping the wood with a V-shaped blade. After, they add the background of their scene and (with gauge and chisels) give the finish to their delineation.

2.      Round carving

wooden owl
wooden owl

Round carving, as the name suggests, carve all around. In relief carving, we make a structure on the wood. But, in the round carving, we use the wood all around in a three-dimensional pattern. In this type of carving, realistic or authentic structures and texture are made. It might be an animal, person, or it might be a bird. It might be big or small in size, depending on the maker.

If you are a beginner, you can do it safely without feeling any danger. If you want to become much of an expert in wood carving, you must start with round carving.

In round carving, hardwood is best for carve in all dimensions. This is like a clay engraving.

3.      Chip carving

a chip carving
A round chip carving

Chip carving, another type of wood carving, is one of the most tricky and challenging carvings. If you are familiar with a chisel, the authoritative work of chisel is there. In a nutshell, the chisel is mostly used for removing wood chips from stove-lengths. The use of a hammer is also universal in this type of wood carving.

Using these tools in chip carving, will make impressive creativity and easy to make debonair ornaments and sophisticated decorations.

Chip carving is mostly associated with Germans as well as in german peoples. Chip carving is known as kerbschnitt.

In modern days, chip carving is known as spoon carvings and used in almost all the countries for decoration purposes. Butternut and mahogany (types of Hardwoods) are the two significant planks of wood used in spoon carving.

4.      Whittling

A sidewalk Jaguar whittling carving
A sidewalk Jaguar

In terms of easy wood carving, or if you want to make something precious in just about the corner, you have to go with whittling. Whittling is just like a piece of old tackle; I mean, it is an elementary method to shape out the wood. You don’t need to have all woodcutting; it only needs one knife for proper shaping.

This alludes, for this rudimental type of wood carving, we use softwoods (specially basswood). If you are a beginner and you crazy about wood carving, you must go for it with whittling because it is safe and sound.

The knives used for whittling are made up of oversized handles that the user can grip it quickly and do their work with comfort. In many modern age countries, whittling is not done as a job, but in most developed countries, people take it as a hobby.

One affliction of whittling is that it brings a lot of time.

5.      Love spoon carving

love spoon
Love Spoons

Love spoon carving is a symbol of kind-hearted, dalliance, intrigue, erotism, and intimacy. Similarly, this classification of wood carving is full of romance and affairs. In love spoon carving, it takes the shape of a spoon, which epitomizes romantic feelings. This spoon-like wood, which is carved, represents love, and looks delightful.

The first lovespoon was originated from the Germans.

6.      Chainsaw carving

Chainsaw carving bear
Chainsaw carving Bear

Last but not least, chainsaw carving is one of the most difficult kinds of carving. As a name symbolize, it uses a chainsaw to cut and shape the vast trunk of the tree. It is not very simple and unique. It’s a very tough job to handle a chainsaw while cutting the wood.

Chainsaw carving is the fastest-growing art in the world. Chainsaw gaining its first popularity in the 1980s by lumberjack tournaments held in Wisconsin.

This razor-sharped blade of chainsaw is commonly known as guide bars. These guide bars are made up of the material according to their efficiency of work. There is a small nose present in guide bars that allows the users to add more details and make the wood presentable.

Best woods for wood carving

Different woods are different in nature. Some woods are hard, and some of them soft; similarly, some are rough, and some are smooth. Different types of woods are used in various types of works according to their need. In wood carving, mostly, we used hard and softwoods. Antithetic types of carving used different types of woods.

Some of the dominant kinds of woods are listed below:

1.      Balsa

Balsa is quite perfect for carving. Balsa is a highly porous wood. Due to porous characteristics, balsa is light-weighted and also the softest wood. So, it is widely used in wood carving. It is also used to make models like (bridges, airplanes, etc.).

The best way to use this type of wood is to dip it into the water. It sucks the water due to pores on it, then you can shape it quickly, and it also wraps over time.

2.      Butternut

Butternut is also beneficial for beginners to start working on wood carving. It is also a kind of softwood but a bit harder than balsa. It contains a different look due to its color (light brown) and grain.

However, butternut also has a drawback. It is very prone to insects; due to this nature of butternut, you found wormholes in the wood.

It is mostly used in whittling.

3.      Basswood

Basswood is another softwood used for carving. When someone needs the best wood for the beginners, the first thing that should click in your mind is basswood.

Basswood is lighter in weight but higher than balsa. It comes in a creamy color. It allows us to paint on it if needed because it has a lighter tone. It is mostly used in whittling but also used in love spoon carving.

4.      Cheery

Cheery is a fantastic wood if you like a block of wood in pinkish color. Cheery is hard enough to break with a knife so, it is used in chip carving in which chisels are used. It is easily deformed into another shape with the help of a chisel and hammer.

It has a pinkish tone and has dense grain.

5.      Cottonwood

Finally, cottonwood is one of the finest wood for carving. It is soft and has a white color. It is broadly used in whittling due to softness.

Wood carving tools

The most important thing is that these tools are not for beginners because they are very sharp-edged and splintery. It can cut your finger or arm in one quick swipe.

Some of the overmastering tools are listed below:

1.      Chisels


A chisel is a tool that plays a significant role in wood carving. It’s made up of wood and steel. It;s ends are very sharped and pointed. Only experts should use this. This is not made for an ordinary person.

Interestingly, it has various shapes and sizes, as shown in the figure above.

2.      Gouge

Gouge tool
Gouge tool

Gouge another perfect tool for wood carving. It is a little much bigger than chisels and has sharp, pricky, and splintery edges. It is mostly used to carve hardwoods like cheery.

3.      Knives

Knives are best used in whittling. It also has pointed edges. They come in different shapes and sizes to perform different tasks.

4.      Chainsaw

Finally, the chainsaw is the most powerful as well as a dangerous tool used in wood carving. As you can see in the above figure, its splintery blade allows cutting any types of wood. However, the wood is hard or not; it’s only just to cut down.

The chainsaw is the type of technology, so it can work easily and with proper efficiency. Although it is very beneficial for humans, it also very dangerous for noob people.

If you are a beginner, don’t even think about using it.

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