Sunday, March 22, 2009

Let's make it 30

Interest is growing and when I combine the number of work colleagues with the growing number of folks who say they will attend the lunch at the 'Table' on the 27th April (World Tapir Day) it seems like 30 tapirs might be a better number. This will also give me a few extra to send to people who have heard of my project but live outside Ottawa. So it's now 30 bodies; 120 legs; 36 days to go. The picture shows the two originals; twenty at the deaf and blind stage; 10 new 'bodies'.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

T shirt Photoshopped over Mexico pic

The T-shirt has arrived - pretty spiffy eh?
You can get yours, and other Tapir paraphernalia, at
Info on Tapirs:
The people I will be sending all funds raised to:

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Eyes and ears

I found some small black shiny beads that I thought would make great eyes. In the black test piece in the picture above I punched a hole with a nail punch and pressed in a bead. Works great as it shines just like an eye against the matte of the paint. And for ears, I'm going to use 'biscuits'. They are used for jointing wood and are really inexpensive. I cut the ends off the lozenge shaped 'biscuits' and then insert them into slits I will make in the sides of the head. So that was quite a successful test ...... 46 days to go!

It was inevitable......

Sooner or later flesh and sharp tools were bound to come together. Lets hope that that it now for this project.

So, why tapirs?

It occurs to me that Pandas, Koala bears and maybe penguins and the like ...... you know, the 'cute' ones, will always have people concerned for their well being. But, if we're serious about sharing the planet and giving dignity and respect to all living creatures, then I think we should be looking out for the 'less cute'. If we can preserve tapirs, we'll be going a long way to preserving all creatures. That's not to say tapirs aren't 'cute' (I happen to find them fascinating) - it's just that they seem to be well below the radar of human concern.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Just in case

Just in case I run out of carved wooden tapirs, I do have a couple of paintings like the one above.

50 days left till World Tapir Day

20 Tapirs now have 80 legs. They're beginning to look like a herd. An 'unheard-of herd' of Tapirs. And I still have all my fingers!

Monday, March 2, 2009

The shaping

All things start with 1.5" square sectioned lumber. Cut with the aid of a tenon saw and a bench hook - as they did in high school woodworking classes back in the sixties.

It's all pretty basic!

I don't have workshop, so carving is done with a rasp and sandpaper for the most part while sitting atop a collapsable 'workmate' work bench that doubles as a vise. I'm alright with these 'basic' tools, as I think the more simplistic the tools, the more interesting the finished piece.

The project - The purpose

About 10 years ago I made two wooden tapirs for each of my daughters. The idea was that they took them, as a little piece of home, to their sleep-overs. I would slip them into their overnight bags when they weren't looking.
Now today, I've decided to make some more - but this time for a different purpose. In 56 days it will be 'World Tapir Day' (Monday April 27th) and by that time I am hoping to have at least twenty wooden tapirs (4" long x 2.5" high and 1.5" wide) for sale. I will then donate all money from these sales to 'The Tapir Preservation Fund'.