Monday, January 16, 2012

My real Swedish Dala Horses

When I was a little guy, back in the early 1980's, my great aunt Virginia went on a trip to Sweden. On her return, she brought me these two genuine Dalahasts. I remember she gave me a story book too, about a little boy who's toy Dala horse came to life and led him on adventures.
These horses are suprisingly rough. Made for the tourist trade, they look to be rough sawn and quickly carved. The heavy base coat of paint looks dipped, while the saddle, tack, and harness are nicely painted in the two-colors fan brush style.
A sticker on the belly of the red horse reads: "Akta Dalahemslojd Tillv. G.A. Olsson Nunsa, Mora, Sweden"

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Blogger she-nanna-gins

For whatever reason, Blogger is not letting me respond to reader comments. So, thanks for reading, thanks for the kind words, and to Brad: the horses I carve are made from basswood, and sometimes butternut. Both are great woods for carving. They are relatively soft woods (though still hardwoods,) with straight, dense, grain. It's almost as easy to cut across the grain as it to cut with it. Hopefully Blogger will fix these issues with the comments.

Friday, January 13, 2012

An Ettin for Ezra

Ettins are two-headed giants from fantasy fiction, most famously from CS Lewis' Narnia stories, and the Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game.

I carved this ettin for Ezra, my friend's three-year-old son. Details on this monster include tattoos, scars, treasure, and a yellow wristwatch. Ezra now has a whole army of whittlied soldiers and wizards. The "bad guys" include a dark wizard, a dragon, and now this ettin.

As always, I used non-toxic materials such as salad bowl finish, acrylic paints, and shellac.