|Am I whittler or... am I a woodcarver?
This question has been posed many times and with
The term "whittling" conjures
images of old guys making shavings while chewing a wad of tobacco and while sitting on the
bench at the country store. The term "carving" implies the use of chisels,
gouges, and a mallet while sculpting is just carving while wearing a beret with a plump
nude sprawled out in front of you.
Another misconception is that whittling
is a lesser art than sculpting. Is the project produced in a studio better than that
produced at the country store? :-}
The following text clarifies the issue:
A whittler is a
person who holds the block of wood with one hand while removing chips with a knife held in
the other hand.
is in a sense scupture in miniature. It differs in essential ways, first that it is
executed with a knife rather than with mallet, chisels, and gouges. The other two
differenct are in scale, and in selection of material. The whittler works in soft wood
while the sculper (woodcarver) selects massive hard woods for his artistry. The whittler
most commonly permits the knife cut to form the final surface where as the sculptor may
sent great amounts of time perfecting the detail.
The work I do is
definitely whittling as all the work is done with a knife and is handheld. It is produced
from a chair and not from a bench. I do not feel like a "second class" citizen
because I choose to whittle and not to sculpt.
it art, folk art, or craft?