Carving Gargoyles, Grotesques, and Other Creatures of Myth: History, Lore, and 12 Artistic Patterns

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Overview

Peering down from rooftops with their haunting, even humorous expressions, gargoyles have endured for centuries as architectural necessities directing rainwater away from age-old buildings, or as others speculate, warding off evil to protect the cathedrals, churches and homes where they were perched.
Today, these mysterious beasts are a popular carving subject for anyone looking to add primitive ornamentation in and around their homes.
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Overview

Peering down from rooftops with their haunting, even humorous expressions, gargoyles have endured for centuries as architectural necessities directing rainwater away from age-old buildings, or as others speculate, warding off evil to protect the cathedrals, churches and homes where they were perched.
Today, these mysterious beasts are a popular carving subject for anyone looking to add primitive ornamentation in and around their homes.
If you've ever wanted to carve a gargoyle, grotesque, chimera or guardian, or just understand their differences, this unique step-by-step tutorial from renowned woodcarver, Shawn Cipa, will guide you from start to finish. In addition to being led through the entire carving and finishing process, you'll also discover fascinating legends and lore about each of these spirited creatures, where surviving gargoyles can be found around the world, and the facts and conjecture surrounding their purpose and meaning.
After you master the skills to complete the Traditional Water-Spouting Gargoyle and Class Grotesque projects, you'll find 10 additional original patterns for rowdy characters, like the Crouching Imp and the Screaming Keystone Grotesque. You'll even find patterns for functional projects, like a gargoyle cane-topper, and a green man door knocker.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Shawn Cipa has given us a wonderful and thorough introduction to my beloved gargoyles. The tutorials are clear and easy to follow. This is a must-have book for all gargoyle aficionados, not just for wood carvers.

In this book Carving Gargoyles, Grotesques, and Other Creatures of Myth, carvers will discover the history and lore surrounding the gargoyle and his cousins, the grotesque, guardian, chimera, greenman, imp - and learn to tell the difference between them all. Scores of color photos show where gargoyles can be found around the world. And for those wishing to make a creature of their own, master carver and author Shawn Cipa provides two complete step-by-step projects for a traditional water-spouting gargoyle and a classic grotesque.
There are also 10 additional patterns for a crouching imp, a keystone, wall panel, even a cane topper and door knocker.

Shawn Cipa is the author of some fantastic woodcarving books and happily he has just added another to his series on mythological creatures with this look at gargoyles, the grotesque and guardians. Beginning with an in-depth history of these fascinating characters, Cipa explores their uses throughout the world, before moving on to two beautiful step-by-step projects for you to try your hand at a traditional water-spouting gargoyle and a classic grotesque figure taking inspiration from Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris. There are patterns for a dragon-lion styled guardian, a green man door knocker, a grotesque corbel, a crouching imp, and an interesting intaglio lion medallion, among others. There is even a satirical take on a woodcarver as a gargoyle, before the book closes with techniques, and selecting timber and tools.

The subject matter is indeed different to many carving books out there but this tome is well worth a look. I had a lot of fun pouring over the pages and feel inspired enough to have a go at one or two myself.

Carving Gargoylesoffers a succinct summary of the history and lore of gargoyles and grotesques, while making clear the distinction between these two frequently confused categories of captivating creatures. With the inspiration offered by the many engaging photographs of gargoyles in this book, and by following Shawn Cipa's extremely lucid instructions, it is possible to create one's own mesmerizing monster.

The Crafts Report
If you've wanted to try your hand at carving a gargoyle—or a grotesque, chimera or guardian—this unique step-by-step tutorial from a renowned woodcarver will guide you from start to finish.
Woodcarving Magazine (UK)
The subject matter is indeed different to many carving books out there but this tome is well worth a look. I had a lot of fun pouring over the pages and feel inspired enough to have a go at one or two myself.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781565233294
  • Publisher: Fox Chapel Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/1/2009
  • Pages: 159
  • Sales rank: 850,010
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Shawn Cipa is the author of Carving Gargoyles, Grotesques, and Other Creatures of Myth, Carving Fantasy & Legend Figures in Wood, Carving the Nativity, and Carving Folk Art Figures. Cipa was featured in Carving Wood Spirits and Green Men by Lora S. Irish. He earned national recognition for his carving in 2000 by taking first place in the Santa Carving Competition sponsored by Woodcraft Corporation. His work has been featured in Woodcarving Illustrated.

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