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Bone and Wood Pendant by Steve-Thorpe Bone and Wood Pendant by Steve-Thorpe
Just finished this. It's carved bone mounted on hardwood (Australian Jarrah) with waxed hemp cord binding. This is the most detailed carving I've done yet, the entire pendant is about 95mm long, so quite large (that's a little under 4 inches for the metrically challenged!)

The bone carving design is freehanded and based on my love of the Art Noveau and Victorian styles of decoration. For the back see [link]

As usual I'm not 100% happy with it and need to work out a way of polishing the bone down in the grooves and piercings better, if anyone has any tips let me know!

The binding attaches a loop on the back that allows it to be strung on chain or my preferences would be black velvet ribbon.

Comments welcome and appreciated.
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
3 more views to get to 2000 ... come on just push it over the line .. still available for sale, nobody seems prepared to pay for the pain of 3 months carving !
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
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:iconcyanide-sweetheart:
Cyanide-Sweetheart Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
This is amazing! But I know how you feel, I'm never happy with my work either. How long did it take you?
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thanks for the compliment.  This one certainly has got a lot of attention and I'm working on more designs along a similar line now.  I'm really not sure how long this took me in actual working hours, as this is what I do to relax it happens around work and family.  But over a period of about 2 weeks I would guess at about 8 to 10 hours.  Most of that time is in the finishing though, getting it polished and smooth. 
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:icontj-theart:
TJ-Theart Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
very impresive dude i like the contrast with wood, and the tiny details
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks, it's looking like it's really popular. Now I just have to work out how much to sell it for!
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:iconbdsart:
BDSart Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2013   Artisan Crafter
Cool carving !
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you.
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:iconkiuslady:
KiusLady Featured By Owner Aug 10, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Very lovely piece! :)
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you for the comment. :)
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I've checked all import regulations and this appears to be fine for all countries so long as it is declared. So no matter where you are I'll send it to you (at your cost of course) !

And remember the NZ $ has a pretty good exchange rate against most other currencies so you can get a one off work of art for next to nothing!
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is up for sale at NZ$90 ... contact me if interested.
I will check on International requirements but I'm fairly sure there are no issues as this is very clean wood and bone and not from any sort of protected or endangered source.
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:iconbluest-rose:
Bluest-Rose Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2012  Student General Artist
Beautiful contrast! It looks so detailed to...
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It's one of the reasons I wanted to try this mix is the dark red of the wood and very white bone. So the detail in the piercing of the bone is shown up much better.

And yes, the detail was interesting to work on, most of it carved under a magnifying glass to see the detail, my eyes aren't what they used to be!
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:iconbluest-rose:
Bluest-Rose Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2012  Student General Artist
I don't think i'd have the patience for working under a magnifiying glass...

Have you ever used Indian inks on bone?
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
The good thing about the magnifying glass is it makes all the detail work much easier, it also has built in light so everything is well lit. The only thing is you can't really move around much so I end up spending 3 or 4 hours sitting in exactly the same spot, which my neck tells me about later!

I've tried Indian inks once and wasn't happy with the results but I really need to try again, I also like the colour of tea staining more than the very black of Indian Ink. I think the more tan browns look more natural. I do however tend to leave the bone natural as I love the golden colour it acquires after a few month in contact with skin.
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:iconbluest-rose:
Bluest-Rose Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2012  Student General Artist
Ouch that must get painfull... I've done some small detail on mine, and my eyes are swimming by the end!

I think Indian inks might work better for highlighting thin lines? I got a nice finish after sanding the excess away. Bone's natural colour is nice enough though :)
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:iconrockhorsegeek:
rockhorsegeek Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2012
it's beautiful! :D
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks.
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:iconlyrak:
Lyrak Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
OMG... this is beautiful!
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you.
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I am very appreciative of the interest shown in this piece, Within 48 hours I have 20 people who have added it to their favourites collections. This indicates that I'm on the right track. I love this melding of materials and colours. I have more ideas and plans to build in inlays of Paua (Abalone to the non Kiwi contingent) and possibly silver wire work. This Victorian/Art Noveau design still resonates with a lot of people obviously.
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:iconfoolsightblind:
FoolSightBlind Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012
Great craftsmanship and design, the two are not always found together
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you very much.
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:iconfoolsightblind:
FoolSightBlind Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012
My pleasure
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:iconmagpie-poet:
magpie-poet Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012
It's lovely.
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you.
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:iconcinniomon:
Cinniomon Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2012
very beautiful! :D maybe dentist tools or something similar would help you polish?
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
The problem is finding a retailer for the tools. I use a dremel tool to do most of my carving and it does have the felt pads and polishing paste but they just don't get down into the tiny holes. Eliminating the scratches from even the finest grade diamond cutters takes fine sandpaper (wet sanded) and you just can't get that down the holes. I'm just going to have to keep searching. I know it can be done because I've seen old bone and ivory carvings that are finely polished in even the smallest crevices.
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:iconlyrak:
Lyrak Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Check with an actual dentist. I've known a few people who actually got some of the less expensive tools for free that way. :) At the very least they can tell you where to look.

May also want to talk to :iconeskimoscrybe: and see if she knows a method - she does everything old fashioned I do believe.
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Yea, I have to visit the dentist soon so I may see what they use, and whether I can get hold of the tools required.
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:iconcinniomon:
Cinniomon Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012
ok just thought i'd give a suggestion. Hope you figure something out! :D
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:iconjarm13:
JARM13 Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Have you tried jewelers files ? Or little tiny scrapers . I make my custom scrapers from drill rod .
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
so grind down old drill bits to make gravers ? I'll give it a try. thanks
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:iconjarm13:
JARM13 Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Kind of .Do you know what a traditional cabinet scraper is and how it works ?" I use traditional carving tools ". I use blank drill rod that friends get me , but old drill bits would work . You might need to heat treat them or just use the butt end that goes in the drill motor . For little stuff I flatten the end of 1/8" drill rod " 3 or 4 millimeters " . Then give it a chisel point and use the point to scrape the wood or bone . I've made them as small as 1 millimeter across . Bigger is better , too small tends to bend and needs sharpened alot. You could just take a hammer to a nail and flatten it , work hardening it at the same time and file it to a point . Then see if it works on a piece of scrap .
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I'll give it a try. I have plenty more projects on the go so it won't take long to sort out a trial piece.
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:iconjarm13:
JARM13 Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Good luck , but remember your work looks really good from the pictures already .
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:iconsteve-thorpe:
Steve-Thorpe Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That's what my wife says .. but like all "artists" I'm a perfectionist. And if we created the 'prefect' work what would we have to strive for. There was a painter, whose name escapes me right now, that after many years of painting produced the perfect picture, and promptly gave up painting because he believed he could not improve on his art. I'm a long way from that point ;)
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