You may be wondering what the heck my blog title is all about this week. Is a 17 Hour Man a good thing or a bad thing? In this case, it is a good thing. The man I am talking about is this special little guy pictured here and he took me 17 hours to carve.
While attending Luther College I took a Scandinavian Woodcarving class as part of my (almost) minor in Scandinavian Studies. Honestly this class was my favorite one in undergrad. It was taught by none other than Harley Refusal, who had previously been decorated by the King of Norway, H.M. Harald V. He received the St. Olav's Medal, in recognition of his role popularizing Scandinavian figure carving in both the US and Norway. He has also written a number of books on traditional Scandinavian woodcarving and has a pretty cool name too don't you think?
Upon finishing my carving, I named him Merv after my grandpa and gave it to him as a gift for Christmas that year. My grandpa was so impressed and couldn't get over that I made him on my own. Mini Merv sat on a shelf for about 2 years until my grandpa passed and my grandmother gave him back to me to keep.
We carved other things in class too including Data Horses. Pictured here is the one I did. I painted it royal matte paint with an iridescent lighter blue polka dot technique on top. I then finished it with some traditional Scandinavian miniature flowers. I think it turned out pretty cute.
If you are interested in learning more, check out Harley's books Carving Flat-Plane Style Caricatures, Whittling Little Folk: 20 Delightful Characters, Scandinavian Figure Carvings, and Carving Trolls and Other Scandinavian-Style Characters.