DJ introduced himself to me and spoke for awhile about the quality of stone and the tools necessary to take an ordinary piece of basalt and carve a human face into the rock. He offered me my pick of the rocks and I found a piece about 15" in height that had a bare hint of a face on one edge. Hammer in one hand and chisel in the other, I set about following his directions. DJ is an excellent instructor and alternates between telling you about the craft of carving stone and telling stories about his travels throughout the United States and Ireland where he plies his craft. The first night flew by and I was excited by what I had accomplished, even if it was just shaping a nose.
On Saturday, I couldn't wait to get started again. Today, I was joined by Kay, who owns the Pickled Heron Gallery in Ridgefield, WA, who sponsored the class. We all worked side by side on our pieces and I am amazed at how the face comes out of the rock.
Once you get going, the face guides you as if it had been waiting inside the stone all along and was eager to see the light of day. By that afternoon, I had found all but the eyes and forehead.
This heron caught his dinner while I was taking his photo.
On Sunday, I carved my chin, eyes and forehead and have only to sand my piece to finish it. I will return for another day of class in May, but I can see, this could truly become addictive.
I've already started my second piece.....