Wood Carving A Handicraft Art and Engraving

Wood Carving: An Art from Nature to Mankind 

Wood carving is a woodworking process using a cutting tool. The result is a wooden figure or figurine, or in the sculptural ornamentation of a wooden object. 

What is Wood Carving?

The Wood carving is the process used to produce intricate patterns in wood with the aid of carving equipment. It may range from floral, typical and geometric motifs to abstract patterns. This is a laborious process, since we should give great attention to specifics.

 The wood carving in the world is a popular practice handed down through centuries by master craftsmen. It requires the wood to create usable items and chisel wooden pieces to shape complex designs using hand tools. We make the regular usage products rolling pin, ladles, sticks, and combs with softwood. Whereas exotic wood such as sandalwood, ebony, walnut, rosewood, and teak is used to create objects of decorative interest. The skilled craftsmen design a large range of wooden handicrafts such as wooden chairs, display tables, wooden windows, dolls, spoons, cups, cupboards, cheerful rooms, window frames, masks, deities, portraits, key hangers, beads.

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 The history of carving may have started with the creation of this planet. When we speak about wood carving, the very first toy man has to play in the world is wood, leaves, and stones. Man began his path on this planet by discovering its environment, where the wood is the oldest wealth and resource in existence for shelter and making tools. As soon as a man used wood as his tool, the wooden carving craft came into existence. It is apparent from the Gothic era, Greece, Pericle’s generation, European origins of the 15th century of Mughal time.

 Wood Textures and Wood Grains

 We must also establish the wood texture first to begin the wood-carving phase. There are two kinds of wood we can use for carving, hardwood and softwood.

Hardwood

Hardwood refers to the wood which derived from deciduous, widespread trees. They shed their leaves annually. Sources include teak, maple, rosewood, sandalwood, walnut, etc. 

Softwood

Softwood emerges from trees bearing cones that are evergreen. It is ideal for wood carving, as it is easy to carve. It does not break adhesives well and is excellent for lamination. Softwood comprises oak trees, cedars and fir plants.

Because hardwood is very delicate and hard to cut with a knife or chisel, the most desirable quality is the softwood with an outstanding grain.

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Wood Carving Methods and Techniques

Now let’s move to the wooden carving process, which requires a few basics yet challenging methods. Depending on the design, the method of carving may be basic or complex. The first stage is to plan and design, then choose the right wood, then carving with the right range and painting in details.

 The artisans and craftsmen are experts in wood carving. They use specific methods for wood carving. We can broadly categorize the wood carving into four types:

 The Deep wood carving: It is two inches or deeper. They make such carvings of intricate floral and animal motifs. That needs a great deal of labor work and expertise. This is the most expensive type of carving.

 The Shallow wood carving: It is normally half an inch deep. In this style of carving, the craftsmen design shapes on smooth surfaces. 

 The Latticework in wood carving: That involves ornate patterns they sculpted on wood. This style of carving, primarily used for screens, depicts, among others, carved motifs of interlaced trees, animals and birds.

 The Semi-carving of wood: They built on a thin panel at the rim of the surface. This method of carving is a joy for carvers as it enables the grains of wood and their abilities.

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Selection of Patterns & Designs

In the beginning, keep in mind that there are various patterns used in different wood. Let’s first come to the pattern forms. They craft some patterns in floral motifs, others in animal motifs. In these days, geometrical patterns using stencils in roof ceilings and doors. On the other side, certain pieces have many motifs together that need more time and focus. They adore the Mosques and shrines with painted wood and patronized holy books.

 Types of Wood

 Well, picking a desired wood is complex, which needs professional guidance as it relies on the design to craft. What tool they use on it, the color, hardness, and softness? Some wood logs are too fresh to get swift moisture. Although certain wood logs are too dry to cut easily. They pick the wood according to the templates and design. 

 For starters, brass wood and butternut are the most appropriate for small carved hand-held items. Since they are delicate, simple to carve and stable when dry. However, because of their hardness, the hard sculpture and broad patterns they typically craft in walnut, cava, and cherry. They are hard to carve and require heavy metal tools to carve them.

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 Wood Carving Tools

A variety of methods and tools are necessary for cutting wood into ideal shapes and designs. While carving knives are simple wood carving tools at first, a limited collection of chisels and gouges are helpful when carving large items. The more complicated the design, the more mechanized the tools will be. The most common tools used to carve wood include:

 Carving knives are basic carving tools. They are available in various shapes and sizes.

Chisels have a cutting edge and forced into the wood to produce carved patterns. They may be of two kinds – square and skew.

Gouges are chisels with a partly cylindrical blade. They have curved cutting edges.

Rasps and Files for detailed carving. They have separate conical teeth and are excellent for shaping decoys.

Grinding Tools for wood carving also called Rotary tools, these are one of the most commonly used and preferred tools. They should use grinding tools in ventilated areas as they generate a lot of dust.

V-tools are also famous as Parting tools, have cutting edges in the shape of a ‘V’. V-tools are used to make sharp incisions and fine carving. The angles of the ‘V’ come in degrees, ranging from 25 to 90 degrees.

Following the design and choice of wood, they need suitable tools to carve. The most critical item before the cycle starts is a dust mask to shield the eyes of carvers from any wood or dust particle. As wood can produce harmful toxic fungi. The next move is to pick a wood grain and find the correct way to start. Carving in grain direction, where the best option of the tool is to be hard enough to leave white streaks on the grain. They carve the simple wood easily with a knife or a gouge. They may render yet rough and dense wood with chisels, gouges, bricks and burs, and accessories.

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Roughing Out & Detailing

The next step of carving is the raw material grinding and the correct shaping. This typically includes operating from broad to small specifics by using different gauges. Detailing and painting are the last and most critical phase.

Wood Carving In Pakistan

The simplest type of wooden carving is whittling. In which they cut the wood and designed to produce various items in various shapes and figures. The art of wood carving was born in Pakistan since the civilization of Gandhara. It is famous for its sculptures of rock and wood. They trace the background of this art by the Kushan leaders from the early Buddhist era. Pakistan has a vibrant history and heritage with a wide variety of woodlands. Therefore, many men, in particular in rural areas, often use their carving abilities to make a living.

It is a more sustainable occupation for many citizens. Over time, this art has changed from sculptures to typical local designs. Pakistan is renowned worldwide for its wood carving, in particular for the woodwork of Swat, Gujrat, and Chiniot. Because of these skilled and hardworking craftsmen, it is very popular.

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Swat

Swat is famous for its cool, sturdy and hued wood and products of the walnut tree. From this wood, they created exquisite and lovely carvings like boxes for jewelry, chairs, doors, windows, swings, and balconies. They use cedar and pinewood for woodcarving in particular. 

Chiniot

Chiniot is famous worldwide for its finely carved and lacquered furnishings. The craftsmen nourish this work into the barn with floral and geometrical designs. Chiniot’s craftsmen have sculpted flowers and abstract designs on barn stands for decades.

The Chiniot men were moving to Calcutta (India) and Multan (Pakistan). We believe the Chiniot masons to be working in the Taj Mahal and Golden Temple in India today.

There is no way to ignore the role of the woodcarving industry is growing the Pakistani economy and exporting its heritage on the world market. Many foreign visitors frequent these areas of Chiniot and Swat intensely and enjoy the elegance of art and craftsmanship. We know the regions of Chiniot and Swat to be the center of this craft in particular. In Swat and Chiniot native craftsmen still uses the pencil to draw the designs and hand tools to carve the wood. It is necessary to note here that Chiniot carved wood furniture competes with the world’s most successful modem furniture industry in Italy. The Italian and Chiniot carving types are identical, but the furniture here is better and not only exhibited in Pakistan but also worldwide to encourage woodcarvings and the skillful craftspeople from Pakistan who have perfected this technique.

Final Words

Woodcarving has experienced several improvements over the years, but has never disappeared. They frequently admire the wood carving balconies, wooden panes and doors are in rural areas and be more conventional and spiritual. They are more robust and inexpensive, though these are very rare to find in villages on the other side.

A few years back, residents in towns find rusty wooden sculpted doors and window frames outdated. They have changed anything involving rural culture and clear doors and glass windows. But now the patterns have shifted, with the decoration of homes with wooden walls, doors. With even luxury designers with photographers use carved wood to decorate the ambiance of their studios like a status mark. It is also worth noting that; there should be woodcarvings for as long as there is wood and there is man.

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