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Eyes- Help


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"The eyes are the key to the soul" or at least I believe there is a lot of truth in that. I'd like to improve how I do eyes on small carvings because I really feel the way I currently do them does not give the animals any "soul". I want the pieces to look at people, seem alive (one day!).


My normal method for doing eyes involves inlaying black coral or just drilling a small hole and staining it with permanganate or ink. As eyes on the pieces are so small Im not sure I could do combination eyes like Ive seen elsewhere. The only thing I can think of is to make/accentuate the detail around the eyes? How do you do eyes?

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The use of the SEARCH function at the top right if each forum page can be helpful when looking for information about something. Granted, the avalanche of potential topics can be daunting, but with the right keyword(s), such as "eye inlay" i quickly found one of the topics that I recall being discussed in the earlier years of the forum. I'll bet that there are other topics as well, if one takes time to read more of the topics in the response list.


This is one that I was hoping to find: http://www.thecarvingpath.net/forum/index.php?/topic/49-inlays/page__p__379__hl__+eye%20+inlay__fromsearch__1#entry379


Tom Sterling created graphics to help illustrate techniques to use. Your imagination will fill in what else you need to make unique eyes for what you are carving.


Happy reading!



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Thanks Janel but I have used the search engine. Ive also read Tom Sterling's Netsuke booklet but as I said most of the eyes I want to do are too small for combinations, though Alain has shown me that it is possible on a very small scale.

Nice bead by the way :)


It was a topic I ummed and arred about creating. I spent quite a while looking at people I consider excellent carvers and how they do their eyes.

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inside pupil ,

glue a piece horn in amber , some paints inside the of the amber for the pupil ,

polishing off the horn and amber

glue a piece of polished amber, on the prepared horn amber pupil ,

sanding and polishing the eye , to the desired shape , cut off ,

Glue the prepared eye in the workpiece ,



to get expression , put the pupil not the center of the eye,







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