Friday, February 26, 2010

Friday's Art Critics :-)

Today we were visited by family. My nephews Angelo,Elden, and my sister in law Karen stopped by for a visit. Angelo,the youngest one, said "good job". I told him he had to be completely honest in his review....not that he isn't always brutally honest, haha! His mom thought they were "sooooo cute and smooth". Now Elden, just kept smiling, and wasn't saying much.... I'll take that as a compliment as well ;-).

Well, it was a good week, I think they both gained a lot of personality over the past few days. I am going to be happy, and a bit sad when the project ends...Joe

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Rain Rain Rain

Today, we have been dodging rain squalls with not much luck. I did get a lot of buffing and polishing in on the little guy. I put some little ears in as well, they look cute. Maybe now he will listen to someone :-). Lets see, I separated the rear flippers. I guess, all in all, it has been a good day. The stormy weather has really settled in here, I may have to shift everyone inside for a few days. My nephews are coming over for a visit today, it will be interesting to get their feedback.
Yesterday, it was such a stormy day, I decided to spend the day in Boston looking around at different art galleries...I met some gallery owners, and made some great connections for the future.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tuesday Before the Storm

Hello! It looks like a snowstorm is blowing in,flakes were blowing around me, while carving....nice. I want to thank my mom today, she is a wonderful artist, who I get lots of tips from. A little pencil mark here, a little pencil mark there, can really make a difference in a sculpture :-).

Sooooo, little Baboo has had some changes.....his eyes are bigger, his nose is shortened, the top of his head has flattened a bit, his mouth has opened up more to show his little tongue, a bit more happiness in his smile :-), touch of little whiskers above his eyes. He has had some serious Fraxel Repair, ha ha.

The older seal is getting a name today..... "Sapere"....... Italian for wisdom and knowledge...the word Sage comes from the latin word Sapere as well...very appropriate. Baboo is from the Joe language, meaning cute, childlike, happy ,little baboo ball of energy!!

Sapere has had a bit of work as well. The eyes a little bigger and less droopy, some wisdom lines at the corners of the eyes, and some whiskers above the eyes.
Everything is subject to change, ha ha...The next move is to smooth out the body lines more, I do not want any scratches, chisel marks, or roughness anywhere. The bodies need to be sleek and ready to swim off at a moments notice.

Ok, back to work....have a nice day...Joe

Saturday, February 20, 2010


I decided to put a little time in today, what a nice day! I made the larger seals eyes bigger. Little Baboo, is going thru a big makeover, I think I will wait until Monday to post any new pictures of him....he is a bit bashful after all of the work. I am shortening his nose to look a little more proportioned, and taking the peak off of the top of his head. I was afraid Jackson was going to call him a turtle...ha ha! He is too honest for his own good. I also enlarged his eyes a bit, and worked on highlighting the eye socket a little more.
I was doing a little research at Borders last night...lots of art books. My favorite artists are Modigliani and Rodin, and have numerous books on their work. I was fortunate enough, on two separate visits to London, to see exhibits on both artists. Anyway, Modigliani did a few stone carvings in his short existence, and Rodin was a stone mason before he became a great sculptor....interesting,no? I found out that tidbit on Rodin last night.......... Ok, enough daydreaming, ha ha:-)I will attach a photo of my Modigliani style sculpture, and one of that little imp Jackson.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cold Windy Friday

What a cold wind today...brrrr! Anyway, today I worked on the faces of both seals. The eyes are coming along, you can see the shadows better from the depth. I have started the upper eyelids of the adult seal, to give it a sleepier look. It made me sleepy doing it...haha:-) Littul Baboo, is really full of it today, he is much happier today. Everyday, as it moves along, I notice more things to be done. More smoothing of lines, more polishing of the bodies,. Overall, I am pleased with everything,I cannot wait to see them at their future home. Have a nice weekend....Joe

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Sunny Winter Day

Today all of the snow has gone, what a beautiful day. I have spent all day trying to balance out Baboo's face, and working on his little eyes. He seems a bit more attentive today, and I give him a pat on the head now and then. Hopefully he will come more to life tomorrow :-).

Monday, February 15, 2010


A little better photo

Monday/President's Day

Sculpture never takes a holiday :-) Back at work today. I gave the seals a change of scenery, the adult seal needs to trim up a bit, a little heavy to move around...haha. I worked on the eyes and the front flipper/paw of the adult seal. On the little baboo, I trimmed his front paw down quite a bit. His eyes are tough to stand out, it must be the colors of the granite. I will get it eventually though. He is full of trouble, I can tell that already. Anyway, here are a few more photos.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Small Update

The seal carving blog is now up on a really cool stone carving site in New Zealand. Nice site, especially if you want to travel to New Zealand to learn about stone carving :-).

Friday, February 12, 2010

Did you know?

The difference between a sea lion and a seal........ the ears.....sea lions have external ears, and seals have internal ears. Sea Lions propel with their front flippers and steer with the back ones. Seals are just the opposite :-)

Next week

I am going to work on the eyes, and bring the little seal's flipper/paw into size. It needs to look more like a paw, and smaller. The puppy needs to be smoothed out on the sides, and the large seal needs detail on its paw, in addition to a lot of rough spots smoothed out. Have a nice weekend....Joe


To finish out the week, I decided to work on the eyes of both seals. The process is to carefully grind out the pupils, within the eye. You leave a small v in the circle, for highlight. The trick is to create a shadow with the depth of the pupil. It is difficult detail. After I get them detailed enough, I will go back to work on the eye surrounding the pupil. They have to be rounded more, and the lids a bit more prominent.... I bought some awesome diamond bits that allow for small detailing.
The photos do not show very well, as it was a bright day,and the pupils need to be deeper and a little bit bigger. They look like great pals , however :-)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A sunny day!

Hi, Today I am working on detailing the little sea puppy front paw and buffing the neck area. It is going well. I am also smoothing out the lines on the big seal. I need names for the seals....think think think Ok back to work :-)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


I had a few questions on the seals today. My blog is set up to show progress on the carvings. Both seals have a bit of work til completion. I have to bring the eyes out, as they are very important to the look of the seal. The little flipper on the puppy has to be thinned out, and I want them both to be very sleek. The adult seal needs the side leg/flipper to be more detailed. It is difficult, as I am trying to imagine the seals alive, and I want them to look alive as well. Thank you for viewing my blog, someday this will make a wonderful story for me , and for others close to the project :-).......Joe


Snowy Day in NH

Very nice progress today. My friend Andy Dumont came down from Vermont to offer up some tips on polishing. Andy is one of the best granite countertop fabricators around. When I buffed the little seal puppy, he really started to show some great color. He is looking like a spotted harbor seal, I am really happy with the contrast to the adult seal.:-) Andy worked on some of the rough areas of the larger seal, with nice success. I am very pleased with the day. I hope my grandson , Jackson, approves this week. If he calls them walrus's again, I am going to be devastated, ha ha:-) He is a bit over 2 years old, but very perceptive. Anyway, enjoy today's photos...Joe

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A New Week!

Today, I worked on the baby seal, and fitting the two seals together. I think there is hope for the little one :-) I am feeling better about the stone, and its look. I will add more tomorrow.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Saturday Morning

Ok, Saturday morning, and thinking about the seals. The larger seal needs to emanate calmness, just enjoying the day for what it is....soaking in the warm sun. The baby seal, needs to be excited about the day...should he stay snuggly and safe or should he slide off the rock into the lake....good to catch....friends to chase.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Tough Week

Oh, it was a cold week of carving...electric grinders malfunctioning, and artistic patience wearing thin. This week I focused on bringing the face up a grade in smoothness, and polish. My grandson, Jackson, gave it his approval. Although , this morning he told his mom he saw a walrus :-/. I have tentatively started roughing out a stone for the baby seal, I am not convinced as of yet. Next week , i should get more quality time in on the project, and will post more photos :-)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Carving progress

I have been trying to imagine the seals alive, what they would be like in water. I have visited The New England Aquarium to watch the seals playing. It is starting to take shape, NH granite is very difficult to carve. I have a long way to go, but am excited about the project. Please follow along to keep track of my progress...Joe

The Carving Shed

The beginning

Here is the start of the project, after looking at hundreds of photos of seals.