Living in Canada, a snowman is a subject everyone can relate to.
Keeping the project small enough to hold, it is an excellent choice for anyone wishing to learn the basics of carving.
Using the three cuts: the stop cut, push cut and pull cut, a carver quickly gains the feel of carving with the grain, against the grain and across the grain while bringing the snowman to shape.
I used block of basswood (1.25″ X 1.25″ X 4″) to carve the following snowman using a detail knife.
Carving a snowman
On the top draw a circle is 1″ diameter and number the corners 1 to 4. On the bottom, the circle is 1.75″ and the corners are numbered 1 to 4. The numbering is for future reference. Corner 1 is the front, corners 2 is the left side, corner 3 is the back and corner 4 is the right side.
I marked line for the top of the brim for the hat. Measuring from the bottom mark
Corner 1 – 3 3/8″
Corner 2 – 3 1/4″
Corner 3 – 3 1/8″
Corner 4 – 3 1/4″
Using a stop cut I follow the line and use a series of push cuts to remove the wood above the brim to create a cylinder 1″ in diameter for the hat. Mark the leather strap and feature and the line for the lower brim measuring from bottom
Corner 1 – 3 1/8
Corner 2 – 3″
Corner 3 – 2 7/8″
Corner 4 – 3″
Make a stop cut on the line for the lower side of the brim of the hat and remove the would using a series of push cut.
To establish the top of the scarf measure from the bottom and mark
Corner 1 to 4 – 2 1/2″
For the bottom of the scarf measure and mark
Corners 1 to 4 – 2 1/4″
Use a stop cut on the top of the scarf and a series of down push cuts to establish the bottom of the head.
Using a stop cut on the bottom scarf line and series of up push cuts establish the bottom of the scarf.
Round corners 1 and 3 for drawing on the front and back features
Notch corners 2 and 4 to establish the shoulders(to be rounded and detailed later)
Draw on the coat, arms and face
Using small stop and push cuts I carve the hat feature base first followed with the top of the feature and the leather strap.
To give the hat a rounded weathered look slope the top down and to one side. On the lower side of the slope carve in a crease. Finish by rounding the top edge.
Finish the hat by rounding the brim
Round the Neck Scarf and mark an even number of lines around the neck
use a stop cut on the marked lines and push cuts to define each rib of the scarf.
After finishing the scarf, continue to use a stop cut and a push cut to relieve the arms, coat collar, coat overlap, buttons, pockets and base.
To create a nose, use a 1/4″ dowel, taper the end and cut a 3/8′ piece off. Glue the cut off piece in place using 5 minute epoxy
Do final clean up and your ready for painting.