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Old 08-31-2008, 10:00 PM
 
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Default Walrus Ivory Carvings & Oosik

I first started noticing these carvings for sale in Wasilla & Anchorage as well as on Homer Spit. They are all very unique. Does anyone collect them besides me? I currently have 3. (I'll post pics tomorrow) And a pretty good size oosik. If you collect these works of art post them up or tell me who your favorite carver is.
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Old 08-31-2008, 10:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barkingowl View Post
I first started noticing these carvings for sale in Wasilla & Anchorage as well as on Homer Spit. They are all very unique. Does anyone collect them besides me? I currently have 3. (I'll post pics tomorrow) And a pretty good size oosik. If you collect these works of art post them up or tell me who your favorite carver is.
If you really like them, try doing it yourself. You can get fossil ivory at either The Ivory House or Alaska Ivory, I forget which. DH used to do a lot of that and I still have all his worshop set-up. It's not all that difficult, either to carve or to do scrimshaw.
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Old 08-31-2008, 11:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by karibear View Post
If you really like them, try doing it yourself. You can get fossil ivory at either The Ivory House or Alaska Ivory, I forget which. DH used to do a lot of that and I still have all his worshop set-up. It's not all that difficult, either to carve or to do scrimshaw.
Really? I like the carvings of the happy bears.
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Old 08-31-2008, 11:27 PM
 
Location: South Dakota
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I am far too lazy to look this up at the moment - what does scrimshaw work entail exactly?

I admit, Barkley, I haven't found any oosik, but I haven't looked for it either. I would love to see the photos you have. Now baleen...it fascinates me and I am looking for the perfect piece.
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Old 09-01-2008, 01:21 AM
 
Location: Bethel, Alaska
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Those poor whales swimming the oceans blue with a baleen missing. And not to mention those walrus' with missing teeth being carved into whales and such. Life isn't fair.
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Old 09-01-2008, 02:08 AM
 
Location: Maple Lake, MN
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Originally Posted by warptman View Post
Those poor whales swimming the oceans blue with a baleen missing. And not to mention those walrus' with missing teeth being carved into whales and such. Life isn't fair.
whales or happy bears - one tusked? walrus - baaddd Barkley..and then you took his oosik too HL - bro-in-law has wonderful specimens of baleen in his entry - had to ask what they were though
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Old 09-01-2008, 08:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by HighlandLady View Post
I am far too lazy to look this up at the moment - what does scrimshaw work entail exactly?

I admit, Barkley, I haven't found any oosik, but I haven't looked for it either. I would love to see the photos you have. Now baleen...it fascinates me and I am looking for the perfect piece.
Here you go:

Scrimshaw Gallery

It's tricky, getting ivory and baleen to work with. If you aren't AK Native, you have to either buy it from a place that gets it from freehold lands [the fossil ivory, mastodon or mammoth], or get it already worked and signed by an AK Native artist - then, if you can bear to do it, you can cut it up and rework it. I have lots of scrap bits of ivory, and quite a bit of baleen as well, gotten under those guidelines. There's also some kind of seed called an ivory nut, which is vegetative and is about as hard as ivory for carving and scrimshaw. One does have to be very careful, because some ivory comes under CITES, and some under the Marine Animal Protection Act. Another good material for learning/practicing with is raw bones or antlers.
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Old 09-01-2008, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Dangling from a mooses antlers
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If you're kissing the oosik you've drank too much Crown Russie....
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Old 09-01-2008, 08:57 AM
 
Location: In The Outland
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Be very careful when wheel polishing baleen, it behaves like plastic and will melt under the heat of the polishing compound. It sure takes a high polish when done carefully though.
Scrimswaw is basically scratching a picture into the ivory then filling the scratches in with black ink, then the surface areas (unscratched) are polished clean.
Anyone thinking about carving ivory, bone or antler should be very careful about dust control. Even hand sanding can spread the very dangerous dust around and you don't want that stuff ending up in your lungs. Folks using flex-shaft or moto-tool equipment and power sanders really should invest in a workbench that is under vacuum. Your health problems from breathing these types of dust will cost you much more in the long run than the few bucks you may make from selling the carvings.
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Old 09-01-2008, 09:40 AM
 
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Originally Posted by rickers View Post
Be very careful when wheel polishing baleen, it behaves like plastic and will melt under the heat of the polishing compound. It sure takes a high polish when done carefully though.
Scrimswaw is basically scratching a picture into the ivory then filling the scratches in with black ink, then the surface areas (unscratched) are polished clean.
Anyone thinking about carving ivory, bone or antler should be very careful about dust control. Even hand sanding can spread the very dangerous dust around and you don't want that stuff ending up in your lungs. Folks using flex-shaft or moto-tool equipment and power sanders really should invest in a workbench that is under vacuum. Your health problems from breathing these types of dust will cost you much more in the long run than the few bucks you may make from selling the carvings.
I wasn't gonna go into the electronics bit. DH also worked with black coral, and the dust from that stuff is really toxic. Need to have a good filter mask along with the exhaust fans, or whatever. A good source for the drill bits for dremels, motos, and foredoms are dentist's offices - once they go through the sterilizer, they are safe to use, and they wear out too fast to be re-used on people. But raw bones are a fine place to start experimenting - you can cut them yourself with a hacksaw, bone saw, or bandsaw, then take them outside to hand polish in the breeze. Besides all that, we also had air filters all over the house, he liked to do hand polishing while watching tv.
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