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  • Carving on a living tree

    ??? Has anyone carved anything onto/into a living tree? I am curious if the tree lived, did the bark grow over the carved area, and any other curiosities that you may have observed.

  • #2
    Re: Carving on a living tree

    I have heard that if you carve on a living tree, you MUST leave pointed edges at the top and bottom of the carving so the bark can grow back. Like if you are doing a spirit face, you would have a large oval for the face, but 'finish' the top and bottom edges into a point(more like a diamond shape). The bark will eventually grow back (even over the carved area) so carve very deep.
    That's my 2 cents

    Donna
    Indiana USA&&http://pyrogite.tripod.com

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    • #3
      Re: Carving on a living tree

      There was a discussion on this subject in one of the carving magazines (Chip-Chat, I think) a while back. Several people asked the same question and one carver sent in a picture of a carving he made in a tree several years ago. It looked aged, but otherwise good. I believe he did have the top and bottom of the carving go to a point as Donna mentions. Check the last year of Chip Chat and you may find the article, anyhow it will make interesting reading.

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      • #4
        Re: Carving on a living tree

        The last time we were in Homer, Alaska, there was a carving in a live tree, that was quite impressive in their little art museum. They also had a lot of other neat stuff (that's an art term) and was well worth the time to explore.

        Some of the early Iroquoy tribes used to carve their false face society masks in living trees, removing them only after they were completed. There was a spiritual aspect to this practice, but I have a theory that along with that, it made for easier carving and gave them a natural 'carving vice' to hold the work till it was finished.

        Either way there were some very imprerssive masks carved in this fashion.

        Al

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        • #5
          Re: Carving on a living tree

          Do you just carve in the bark or do you carve deep into the sapwood area? It would carve easier being wet.
          Jim McKinney

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          • #6
            Re: Carving on a living tree

            My friend does that and it leaves a permanet mark on the tree and the bark doesn't grow over it.

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            • #7
              Re: Carving on a living tree

              I have seen internet sights that show what you are talking about.( Can't think of any addresses right at the moment)
              On the ones I have seen I remember that they said that they had to return from time to time to trim the growth back. Also, they were carving deep into the sapwood, removing all bark, so that when the tree 'healed' the bark would have a rolled or round edge to the carving, the same way a cut -off limb cures.
              grumpy560

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