Cypress knees are another natural material in which the carver can be expressive. I really like to do cypress knee figures of Old World Santas, traditional Santas, and wizards. These cypress knees are a fun and creative carving process, as no two cypress knees are ever alike. I try to include all the natural lines, bumps and other features into the carving to make each truly unique. After removing the bark from the knee, I sketch the figure and then carve it starting with the face. The completed carving is sanded and then painted with thin washes of acrylic paints. The final step is to give the carved and painted knee a coat of antiquing glaze to enhance the interplay of light and shadow resulting in the look of both depth and age. Or the carved and sanded knee can be simply coated with several applications of tung oil. Either way, the result is a unique woodcarving that invites touching, making the carving a tactile form of art for the viewer as well as the carver.
Ol' Potbelly, a wizard Emergence of the Wood Spirits