The Ultimate Guide To Wood Carving Pattern Books and Inspiration
To put together The Ultimate Guide To Wood Carving Pattern Books and Inspiration, I collected books from the best carvers and the best pattern makers, including tattoo artists. Have any comments, thoughts, or your own recommendations, let me know in the comments below.
1. Writing My Own Book
Have you ever thought about writing a book? It was never something on my bucket list but I ended up writing one anyway.
Here’s how it came about…
When I first started My Chip Carving in 2007, everything I sold was produced by someone else. Books included. For several years, Shelley told me over and over, “You have to write your own book!”
In 2014 I bit the bullet, agreed with her and committed to writing my own book on chip carving. I knew the title immediately, Chip Carving Essentials, Step-by-Step Guide to Successful Chip Carving.
My goal was to write one chapter each month, which was as much about photography as it was about writing. When you see my book you’ll quickly notice my concentration on high quality close up photography so the reader could clearly see what I’m explaining in the text.
Surprise, surprise…I was done ahead of schedule!
While I was developing content I took some time to search online for a freelance editor. I was truly blessed to find an amazing editor who had done some work on a craft, how-to book before. She knew exactly what needed to be done to create the book, page-by-page, chapter-by-chapter, in a format the printer needed. In short order, she had it ready to go. With this approach, you can tell I wanted to self-publish my book. Rather than find a publisher who would take care of printing and marketing my book and deciding whether to reprint in the future, I wanted full control of my own destiny. Thankfully my dad spent his entire career in the printing industry. Finding a quality company to print my book was really easy. With his inside contacts, we met at Reindl Printing in Merrill, Wisconsin to watch the first pages come off the press. Really cool to be able to see this. A few weeks later I was back at Reindl with a small U-haul trailer to pick up my skid of books.
At the end of the process, I was already thinking about my next book. But it didn’t take long for reality to set in and that idea got tabled quickly.
As the kids say, Shelly and I are #relationshipgoals
2. World-Class Carving Books By The World’s Best Carvers
Helmut Maier is the author of Kerbschnitzen
The Ultimate Guide To Wood Carving Pattern Books -Helmut Maier is the author of Kerbschnitzen (German and English in same book). ISBN 3-7724-1677-2, ©️1993
When you look at Helmut’s chip carving, immediately you notice his precision and mastery of back-to-back grid patterns composed of swirl, Gothic-like shapes. You’ll be equally impressed when you find out that his work is carved in oak. Oak is quite hard so a sharp knife and good technique are a must. And many of these oak carvings are not small! The second row, first image, each piece is 48″ x 8″. Also, he chip carves by holding the knife like a pen. He prefers this grip rather than holding the knife like we do because he says it is “easier to manage when work involves small circles, hard woods, large patterns, fine indentations and accurate inscriptions.”
Christian Rubli is the author of Das Kerbschnitzen,
His book is one of the original (as far as I know) books on the basics of chip carving.
Christian Rubli, ISBN 3-456-70073-3, ©️1987 (German)
Here are some pattern books I’ve found useful when it comes to generating ideas for chip carving.
Handbook of Designs and Devices, Hornung
Pattern Design by Lewis Day
376 Decorative Allover Patterns from Historic Tilework and Textiles, by Charles Cahier and Arthur Martin
Historic Ornament- A Pictorial Archive By CB Griesbach
Great Book of Tattoo Designs, Lora Irish
ISBN-10 – 1565238133
A Treasury of Woodcarving Designs by Alan and Gill Bridgewater
SHOP BOOKS NOW!