I’ve really been struggling getting satisfactory results but have been trying to practice as much as I can. Most recently I spent time with the squirl pattern as I thought it might help with several aspects including grain direction, order of cuts, etc.
I haven’t applied a finish yet, but here’s my unfinished knife box.
I like this squirl pattern and your carving. And yes, improvement can happen. But it’s not for free. Never. Nowhere. Everything is hard work. And a good master around. Which Marty sure is. His tipps are worthy! And to me key is the depth and the angles of tip of the blade. In some patterns I draw fine lines to help me see where I have to be with the tipp approximately.