If you’re like me, you’ve been slaving away for hours carving mermaids, mer-cats and other mer-creatures into your surroundings, so this should provide some inspiration and give you something to talk about over dinner tonight. William Jeffrey Jones is a guitar carving beast of mythical proportions himself, carving such details as tails, scales and curly bits into the finest fine, full-grain walnut. He shares a little bit about his process from his site where you can feast your eyes upon the artistic spectacular he applies to his craft.

When I begin a piece like this, I’m immediately conscious that I’m in it for the long haul, because of the enormous amount of time it takes to not only execute the details, but to refine the form and surface to a level of artistry I hope history will consider extraordinary. Slamming out just a “satisfactory” carved instrument is never my intent, so I always plan to spend whatever amount of time it takes to accomplish something extra special and unique.

Even the number of drawings I do and changes I make to those drawings to develop one that is “just so” can take many hours or even days. Once I arrive at a design that is acceptable to me, I begin work in a medium in which I’ve spent thousands and thousands of hours: clay. In clay, I can effectively develop the 2-dimensional drawing into a 3-dimensional form. The drawing contains minimal information, so the form comes to life nurtured by experience, observation, and imagination. – William Jeffrey Jones

Hat tip to Joe Birner for sending this in!


Josh is founder and editor at SolidSmack.com, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.