Last week, I spent some time along the Niagara River. I saw the Falls again (I live only three hours away), and they are still thrilling. But what I noticed more than ever before were the beautiful trees on my walks around, especially the abundance of lovely walnut trees. They are stately like oaks, yet softened by their long slender leaf stalks drooping like willows, the leaflets fluttering in the breeze.
I tried to do many quick sketches on the trip, simply because it reminds me to stop and see for a moment.
Since returning, I’ve finished my efforts to do justice to the inner beauty of a walnut tree that fell closer to home.
In terms of overall size, this is probably the largest bowl I’ve made. It is 27 inches long, 14 1/4 inches wide, and 5 1/4 inches high. The decorative carving around the rim is similar to the large triangular recesses I’ve carved on a couple bowls before, but the sides of these recesses are curved, creating a series of Gothic arches of sorts, or maybe petals.
This subtle difference is a bit more challenging to lay out and carve. I find it best to draw the outline by eye, since the recesses get progressively smaller toward the side of the bowl. After drawing, I use a v-chisel to remove some of the bulk, then I do the rest of the cutting with a skew chisel.
The upper surface of the bowl is arched, with the rim flowing downward from the handles.
On the exterior, a raised ridge line carries the line of the handles along the bowl. I reflected the texture of the exterior surface on the interior as well. What a privilege I have to work with this beautiful wood.
Below are a few more assorted photos.