It's beginning to look a little like Christmas...

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Project by StevenAntonucci posted 11-15-2010 04:44 PM 1907 views 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Got some things done yesterday while I had the house to myself. This “turning” is a somehat annual tradition that I started a couple of years ago. Each year, I carve a Santa for a collector I know. In return, she lets me keep half of my stuff.

He started life on the lathe, between centers and became a “bullet”. From there, I used a picture of another carvers work as a starting point for layout:

I think there is enough different in scale, execution, and color to make it 51% original, and I can see doing this type of work again.

The coloring was done with Mixol pigments in lacquer, cut about 50/50 with lacquer thinner. About 2-3 drops of Mixol is all it takes. The stuff goes a long way.

Comments welcome.

-- Steven

6 comments so far

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3871 days

#1 posted 11-15-2010 04:49 PM

These are very nice gifts.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View mmh's profile


3682 posts in 4727 days

#2 posted 11-15-2010 05:32 PM

I like the shape of the Santa. It’s intriguing that you started with a lathed bullet and then carved it down, making it a relatively quick piece to create. Nicely carved at that.

Since I like seeing the natural grain of the wood, would you consider using a stain or just wash the wood with the color desired and allow the grain to show? I think this technique would look quite stunning and actually more rustic. Not to say that your paint job is not nice, as it’s quite rich looking too, but I am thinking that the grain could show off more and give the viewer more understanding of what this piece is made of.

Looks like you should have more days to yourself!

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View StevenAntonucci's profile


355 posts in 4943 days

#3 posted 11-15-2010 05:42 PM

The photo doesn’t show it real well, but the basswood grain does come through the lacquer pretty well. of course, it’s just basswood, so it’s nothing that exciting. I left the face and his undergarment natural wood. I also debated a quick 600 grit sanding to buff through some of the lacquer and expose some of the cut marks a litte better, as none of the surfaces are flat (nor were they meant to be…).

-- Steven

View sedcokid's profile


2738 posts in 4603 days

#4 posted 11-15-2010 05:52 PM

Wow! Very nice, I wish that I could carve like that…

Thanks for sharing

-- Chuck Emery, Michigan,

View Loucarb's profile


2388 posts in 4450 days

#5 posted 11-16-2010 02:42 AM

Great santa, I like the choice of colors. I like your vessels also. I love those shapes but have a lot of trouble turning them. Well done.

View StevenAntonucci's profile


355 posts in 4943 days

#6 posted 11-16-2010 02:59 AM

Thanks Lou… shameless self promotion coming:

I’ll be teaching hollow turning at Peters Valley next summer in addition to the Intro to woodturning class… If you’ve never taken a class in NJ, it would be a great Christmas present to yourself ;-)

And for Sedcokid, anyone can carve with about two or three basic tools, which is all that I use…getting the idea mapped out still is work for me…

-- Steven

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