pgtruspace's blog

about things that interest me.

Category Archives: wood carving

A New Bowl is taking Shape

After about 10 hours of labor this 12″ x 22″x 4″ offering bowl is now shaped and ready to begin the needed finish work

After a couple days cutting up a dead and down Oak tree I have the stump to cut up. Now that last 2-3 feet of a log has a very tortured and tough grain. Very difficult to split with a splitting maul. Such tortured wood makes for the kind of bowl making wood that I seek, The cut out of the center of a Big crouch also makes for a beautifully colored and grained chunk of wood and is nearly impossible to split..

The Draw back of using this kind of wood is you never know what you might encounter as you work your way towards the finished bowl. Sometimes great beauty, sometimes junk! and great piles of wood chips and saw dust

The rough cut from the log, in this case a section from the stump
After cutting away the dross and squaring up the block
The bowl is hollowed out using router and chisels to get the general depth and shape.

Then the outer shape is cut and chiseled into shape, As I never know what I might encounter. the finished shape and size is dictated by the sound wood that remains for the bowl.

A pine, bread making bowl or Trencher

Next a pine bowl being created from a half of the butt cut ( stump )of a pine.

Rough semi-shaped bottom of the 14 x 27″ bowl, outside
Top view of the bowl 12″ x 24″, inside dimensions,

Finished bottom shape
Finished top shape

The size and weight of this bowl will make for a fine bread making bowl. Mix and knead the dough in this bowl and let it rest & rise right in the bowl. Is it a bowl or a trencher? Due to it’s width to length my guess Bowl

Offering Bowls


Offering bowls

A number of finished and semi finished offering bowls.

Offering bowls are created for two handed display or offering and are wonderful for center place display of food or art.

    Over several years of trial I have developed a style and technique that suits my needs and the material at hand, massive pieces of solid wood!

This is a view of a cut of a cottonwood or popular log, and a semi finished bowl of the same cut. All green wood. I have the best luck, rough shaping  the bowl and then letting it dry out over the winter. By the next winter it is dry enough to finish shaping and then surface finish. Linseed oil is a good sealer to slow the drying so the warpage and cracking is reduced.  On the right is a dry semi finished bowel of Oak  and my shadow!

A bowl of this size takes me about 50 hours to complete.

This is the back or reversed view of the same pieces. I try to create the bowl as dictated by the log piece rather then try to find a suitable piece of wood to create a preconceived bowl. These bowls were created from a clean straight cut of wood. Generally I take cuts from the stump or a large branching crouch. The more gnarled the grain the better. If it is a piece that you don’t want to have to split and too large for the stove it is perfect for working into a display bowl using my technique.  More later as I get better at my posting and my photography.    😎   pg