The next level is Level Three and contains the face and the bowl of the hat. Note that at the bottom of the face, covering the Fireman’s mouth and chin will be his dust mask. This area is left un-worked as it will end up higher on the carving.
The final level includes the flag over his shoulder and the hat brim. At this time I leave these areas at the original wood surface. They will receive just a small amount of rounding over during the detailing work.
With scissor cut your pattern into sections according to the Levels that you have established. Also cut some scrap carbon paper that will fit these sections. Use masking tape to secure the pattern piece and carbon paper to your work. Trace along the detail lines of the design.
I have always preferred to use “the worst first” method of carving. This means that what ever area of the design seems the hardest, well, that’s the area that I begin working. For this piece it is the face.
I will return to the face area over and over again as I work each level. This allows me to slowly define this area. Here I have established the eyes, nose, and cheeks into their general forms. The inside of the eye, or eyeball area for a small carving can simply be a very deep cutout. This lets a dark shadow form that implies the iris to the eye.