I’m the guy that orders vanilla ice cream at Baskin Robbins, so you can imagine how wild I felt carving this asymmetrical bowl. The silver maple log flared out wider at one end and also had a slight twist. Going with the flow, I just let my hair down and laid out the bowl by drawing freehand onto the blank.
There are many logs available that are less than ideal for making symmetrical bowls, but can still become beautiful and useful pieces as unique as the log itself.
One common example is the flared log from the base of a tree where the trunk transitions into the root buttress. With such a piece split in half, you’re left with a blank that is wider and higher on one end, but with the grain simultaneously running true along the split surface and under the bark. The growth rings simply thicken to create the flare. You can’t recreate that situation with a straight log.
With the log for this bowl, there was only a slight flare, still, the right side with the wider handle is a bit higher than the other end.
By extending the lower corners of the handles across the underside, I hoped to emphasize the subtle bending along the length of the bowl. The natural staining within the wood also contributes to the effect.
I was glad for the opportunity to make this funky bowl, because it was an ideal canvas for an excerpt from Harriet Monroe’s poem “The Pine at Timberline.”
What has bent you,
Warped and twisted you?
This is the second time I’ve used this line; I wrote about the first time here.
I’ve just posted this one to my website.