Bits and pieces of this piece have appeared here for the last month or so. I’m blessed with a talented, lovely and charming wife, and this is a collaboration between Joyce and I. If you don’t read Hebrew, this is the letter Chai, and in this form it symbolizes life in the here and now, and life everlasting.
The panel with the letters is hand-carved basswood. The background has been dyed black, and the painting on the letters is done with watercolor pencils. The frame is solid sapele (sometimes called African mahogany) held together with mortise and tenon joints. The little square pegs are ebonized walnut. The panel was sealed with several coats of shellac, following by a couple of coats of flat lacquer.
Joyce is responsible for the concept, design and painting. I did the carving, construction of the frame and final finishing. We worked together to design the frame. The frame is about 11-1/2″ wide and 10-3/4″ high, the exposed part of the panel is 7-3/8″ wide and 7″ high. It’s a real pleasure to have a partner to work with, someone who will push you to go somewhere you never would go on your own. I think this turned out pretty well and I’m looking forward to doing some more.
This piece is a keeper, it’s not for sale, but two more are in the works. One with the same color scheme as this one, and one with a sky blue background and a tiger maple frame with a clear finish. If you’re interested, click my signature to send me an e-mail.