This class is designed to be an introduction to basic carving skills and would be perfect for any furniture maker who wants to take his or her work to the next level. Alexander will introduce the student to the design process and ways to embellish their furniture as well as give it character. He will start by sharing his sharpening techniques which he calls “sharpening on steroids.” This is a production style of sharpening that is fast and precise, which he uses every day that he carves. Demonstrations will also include how to use carving gouges the old fashioned way – by hand. This class will cover tool selection, how to work with grain issues in the wood, planning the cut, ways to carve safely, how to clamp the wood without damaging the carving, and subtle tips and tricks in getting the best use out of your gouges. Students will start with carving a basic relief of a floral decoration, then move on to a more advanced relief carving of a classical acanthus leaf design, and finally will move on to carve a classic shell design in relief. Alexander will explain how to think through a carving project in order to make the carving process the most efficient. He will also demonstrate how to carve the linen-fold design, how to carve grapes or beads, and how to carve lettering.