Woodcarving in Progress – Daily Journeys


Some of my woodcarvings can take a couple of years to complete and only then are they included in the Galleries on the web site www.jawoodsculptor.co.uk. It seems a pity not to show the early stages somewhere such as the blog. One of my current projects is Daily Journeys. There are seven people on the morning and evening bus journey, and their different states of mind and physical condition are compared. It seems trips are fashionable. Boris Johnson exhibited his bus people and Turner Prize nominee Oscar Murillo took his Collective Conscience sculptures down to Margate by train.

The carvings are in their 2nd stage. The first stage is just blocking out the figures and seats. This allows me to get tools on the second stage. At this time I am trying to find the figures. Their third stage is adding detail and a final tidy up. Here are some photos of individual figures.

Going to Pilates

Back from Pilates

I recently dislocated my shoulder for the 11th time at a pilates class, so this change of stance feels personal

Man with a dog on the shoulder

Man with a dog on the floor

These two carvings have had the least work

Up Tight man trying to relax

Uptight man

Man stretching

Stretching man more relaxed.

Girl Asleep

Girl awake and doing make up

11-year-old girls – very friendly and sharing a seat

Friends no longer

The final clean up stage now starts, but don’t hold your breath as it can take a few months. I have been doing other things – Myriorama – and been to Malta for 3 weeks. So a new year and I am back to it.

The next step was to get all the seats the same. Some were a tad oversize, just waiting for this stage. Some were half an inch too tall which can only be due to inaccurate measuring. When carving a figure, all the rest are excluded from my vision, so the difference in the size of the seat has not been noticed.

There are two measurements, height and width, and it seemed reasonable to use the metal set square as it would give me a 90 degree and a measure, It worked on the first one.


The second seat showed up a problem. There was not enough space between the figures to get the metal set square in.

Sculptors are very adaptable. A painter can go to any art shop and get all they need for almost any style of painting. Sculptors have to search around for what they want. Anyone casting in metal would need a supplier that is unlikely to have any of the tools a wood sculptor needs. Many of mine are either hand made or bought from second-hand outlets. I used some scrap wood to make a tool that measures width and height and fits most of the seats.

No gap at the bottom and fits the top of the seat between heads. There are problems ahead where I have an arm resting on top of the seat, but I will worry about that when I come to it