As I have noted in the excerpt, this sculpted eye is in here because it serves as a reminder, to me anyway. It may also serve as a lesson to others about careful material selection.
In the case of this small test sculpted eye the wood is Red Cedar. It has a tight grain, finishes well, but is soft enough to be easily worked with hand tools. It is also coloured light enough that the shadow relief isn’t lost, unlike much darker timbers.
And the reason that this all came about is because of the lessons learnt in another recent sculpture of mine. That particular sculpture is Sin Cerebro and I sculpted that piece from pine. At that time I only had access to limited timbers, so I had little choice.
For the most part everything went well in the making of Sin Cerebro, but then I got to the eyes. It was at that point things started to fall apart, literally. The grain with that particular timber is extremely brittle. It is so brittle in fact, as I was shaping the detail in and around the eyes the wood was just falling away. And that was the end of that.
I suppose, if I were to use that type of pine again, I would try and soak the wood with some kind of stabilising agent beforehand.