Chip Carving Practice Patterns: DON’T Use These!

by | Patterns, Practice | 1 comment

DON’T use the chip carving practice patterns I’m going to give you!….at least not right now! When you finish reading this post you’ll know when to use them.

“I’ve been chip carving for 10 years and my most recent chip carved plate has chip out and needs the same clean up and “fixing” as a similar plate I carved 5 years ago. Grrrrr!”

“I feel like I’ve been wasting my time making one chip after another on my basswood practice boards. Last week’s practice board look the same as this week’s board!”

“I’m putting in the time! Why aren’t I getting better?”

In this…Chip Carving Practice Patterns: Don’t Use These NOW! I’ll answer all of these questions and more. 

FREE Chip Carving Practice Board Patterns

Learning how to practice chip carving, whether you are a beginner just starting out, or if you’ve been carving for several years and want to improve, involves more than just mindlessly making chips on a regular basis. 

Time spent practicing any task requires 3 Key Elements!

Time spent practicing any task requires 3 Key Elements!




I’m going to drill down on each of these elements so you can see why each one is so important


Examine your surroundings right now as you’re reading this message.

Is your email inbox open so you can immediately see when the newest message arrives?

Maybe your phone is pinging with social media posts.

Are the kids running around and asking, “What’s for dinner?”?

Is music playing or the TV on?

There are so many things that can distract us from the task at hand. Without establishing and maintaining FOCUS throughout a practice session, your attention will be diverted from one thing to another instead of directly at your practice board. In Deliberate Practice, FOCUS is step one!


During my years as a Div.III Collegiate tennis player, I spent a lot of hours practicing.

As I look back, I think many of those hours were wasted because I wasn’t giving myself specific feedback on what I was doing wrong.

Sure, I knew when the shot was out or the ball was hit in the net, but WHY?

What was I doing to cause the error? I had a rough idea and would tell myself, “Get lower” or “Step into it” but the practice wasn’t deliberate.

I wouldn’t go back and say, “Hit me that shot again” so I could take action on the feedback.

The same can be said of practicing chip carving. Moving from one chip to the next, hoping they will get better as you spend more time practicing, is futile without FEEDBACK.

You have to know what went wrong so you can make the needed change(s) and improve! Practice is not Deliberate if FEEDBACK is missing.


You’ve established your FOCUS, given yourself FEEDBACK and now you’re ready to make the next cuts. It’s time to FOCUS again. 

These are the 3 Key Elements in Deliberate Practice. The cycle repeats itself over and over again during your practice session. 

FREE Chip Carving Practice Board Patterns

Remember that the amount of time spent doing something does not necessarily mean you’re better than you were last year, 5 years ago or 15 years ago! 

I’ve been told more than once, “I don’t need a lesson, I’ve been chip carving for over 30 years!”

Time spent doing something does not mean you’ve improved since you first started!

I’ve been chip carving for over 30 years and I’m still learning something new all the time. 

Here’s a short clip from the Chip Carving: Deliberate Practice Course. Look for FOCUS – FEEDBACK – FOCUS

FREE Chip Carving Practice Board Patterns

Deliberate Practice is also needed in other areas of life. Take music for example.

In the world of music, virtuoso violinist Nathan Milstein says,

 “Practice as much as you feel you can accomplish with concentration (FOCUS). Once when I became concerned because others around me practiced all day long, I asked my professor how many hours I should practice, and he said,

 ‘It really doesn’t matter how long. If you practice with your fingers, no amount is enough. If you practice with your head, two hours is plenty.’

FREE Chip Carving Practice Board Patterns

START the Deliberate Practice Course NOW!

I’m always available to help you improve your chip carving skills!. 

Marty Leenhouts