Sunday, July 30, 2017

Celtic knot work humble beginnings!

Many years back, when I first got into serious love spoon carving, I was inspired by the wonderful Welsh love spoon carver Mike Davies to incorporate some Celtic design into my work. I discovered a fabulous softcover book called, "Celtic Art: The Methods of Construction" by George Bain. This book supplied me verbatim with the first designs I carved. At first I had no idea how to make my own designs, so copied what was in front of me. Gradually, I modified and altered and eventually made my own patterns. It was both a supremely frustrating and highly enjoyable adventure!! This little Celtic bird (copied almost directly from a tiny sketch in Bain's book) became the inspiration for a little Celtic Dragon...I'll take no real credit for the dragon as it is pretty much a direct copy of the bird, but doing things like this helped me to learn about knot work and Celtic zoomorphic form and after many false starts, allowed me to eventually undertake designs of my own. The little dragon has become a popular design and I often see copies and variations of it drift by on the internet.

I wouldn't classify these as lovespoons per se, but the eternal (closed) knot structure and the heart shaped bowl lends a certain level of romance to what otherwise I would likely label a Celtic spoon.

Humble beginnings, but it was the copying and dissecting that let me start figuring out how Celtic knots work best!!