With my previous design I was sure of what I wanted through each stage of sketching and burning. With this design I wasn’t so sure. I liked the idea of a woven pattern, but wasn’t completely sure how I wanted to execute it.
I started by cutting the gourd into a bowl using a coping saw. Then, on a table, I inverted the bowl on a sheet of sandpaper to even out the entire edge. With this done I could start making my marks around the circumference. With the bowl still inverted I used Legos to adjust the height of my pencil by predictable increments. The photo shows the diagonal marks in place, but they actually came later.
I then tried to sketch the diagonals and found it very difficult to keep them consistent, given the fact that the diameter varies with the curve. Rather than spend more time doing it by hand I created a template with Adobe Illustrator. I came up with 24 divisions because it divides 360 degrees evenly into 15 degree increments. The concentric circles helped me to position the bowl evenly.
I cut out the center of the template to allow me to mark the bottom of the bowl.
As I moved into the burning process I was less sure of what I wanted to do. It turned out looking more like bricks than weaving, even though I tried to give it some texture. I don’t hate it, but it wasn’t really what I had hoped for. I should have taken pictures through the process, but didn’t. When I finished burning the lines it seemed like the pattern was a bit boring, so I started adding smaller lines for texture and variation. I also tried some shading, though I found it difficult to shade with a light, even toasting on the gourd surface. I know what needs to change to make it more like what I envisioned. But, next time I will also have a practice gourd handy so I don’t make all my mistakes on the piece I want to keep.