As with last year it seems I have come away from Spoonfest with ever more excitement about new ideas for spoon carving. Just seeing all the other carvers work up close is incredibly more valuable than images on the net. For me, buying spoons with certain aspects that I would like to try out on my spoons, can sometimes be as valuable as booking onto one of the festival short courses. That way I’m able to constantly refer to any part of the spoon and if I don’t understand how a certain cut was achieved then it’s fun to discover through practice and experimentation.
Something else I’m excited to try more of is Magnus Sundelin’s freestyle chip carving. He did a great demo on the weekend and although I’m not so into the geometric style, (it’s a little dry for me) the more natural and free styles of Magnus, Jane and Anja look like fun. I’ve just bought a hand forged blade from Magnus so I can have a knife designed for the job as although my mora is adequate, it has limitations. I’ve got some ideas that could be really good fun, like chip carving little animation scenes into the handles of large spoons. so once the knife arrives I’ll be experimenting lots!
Not only was there spoon carving, but we were also treated to April Stone Dahl’s demo of ash splint baskets. From gathering and pounding, to prepping and weaving. I have tried it once before but after chatting with April discovered my mistakes. So, you know what else I’ll be doing in the coming weeks ;D..
Returning back from the site to Leeds after all the raking of wood chips and dismantling the fires I certainly had the post-festival blues of not being surrounded by all the lovely woodworking folk, but what this year has stirred in me again is to connect with as many people who are interested in carving as possible.