The little howler is coming along with some detail today. As I mentioned earlier, the ears are being attached separately so that the grain of the wood follows the direction of the ear…and ends up being a stronger carving.
Below is a picture that will give you an idea of how that is done. The ear was first cut out from a piece of wood in the general shape that I was looking for. Then I took a piece of pencil lead that you can buy from an art shop and scrubbed that lead all over the area on the dog where I wanted to place the ear. The ear blank was then positioned where I wanted it to eventually land and pressed ( and wiggled a bit ) against the leaded area on the dog carving. You guessed it…you end up with lead markings on the underside of the ear that marks all of the high points that now need to be shaved away. As you keep doing this, the underside of the ear eventually gets dished and shaped accurately to fit the contour of the dog carving. And, voila…you have a pretty decently fitted ear and you can then continue to carve the exterior of the ear…which I did making folds and hollows.
By the way, the fine black lines are from a wood burning tool used to clean up the deep cuts of the wrinkles…also, by the way…those are Peggy’s hands doing the modelling. This is a real team effort.