Lincoln by Richard Arfsten
Lincoln is a carved limestone sculpture bust. Stone carving has been on my bucket list of things to do for a long time, I never had the nerve to try it before since I have the patience of a gnat and stone takes forever to finish.
A friend of mine talked me into entering an ice sculpture carving contest a few years ago. They give you a 100 pound block of ice and you have four hours to make something. Then they judge the pieces and if you are lucky they give you some prize money.
I had nothing to lose so I bought some chisels on eBay and put my name into the competition. I learned ice was a crystal solid with much the same properties as stone. You just use heavier chisels on stone and stone does not melt at warm atmospheric temperatures.
So I carved ice for a couple of years and decided freezing my body was not a lot of fun. It did give me the confidence to attempt stone, however.
My first Lincoln looks like he is from the planet of the apes. I did learn that it is easier to get a likeness if you work bigger. You can let it sit for a period of time and then come back to it and it is easier to see your mistakes. You can't do that with ice!
This picture was taken while the bigger Lincoln bust was in progress. It is still "in progress" three years later. Every time I walk past it I see more mistakes. When I have some time I peck a little.
The last part of the carving takes a long time because you have to think carefully before you remove too much. As I mentioned, I am still working on the piece after starting it three years ago. I like the periods of letting it rest so my mind goes into reset mode. I am basically a procrastinator with many balls in the air all the time and this mindset gives me a good excuse to be slothful.
Sculpture size: 22"H x 12"W