Peach pits have a special place in my heart. They are one of the first things that I learned how to carve with my dad when I was a kid. He got me a knife and a pit for my birthday one year. I probably was not that enthusiastic and then months later picked it up and asked my dad about carving a monkey.
My mom had shown me the monkey pendant that my dad carved for her ages before. It had a gold chain and it was caught in the rat's nest of necklaces that lived within her jewelry box. Of all my Dad's carvings I liked the monkey pit the best. The monkey had it's tail in it's mouth and it resided in a fetal shape, reminiscent of the seed. My dad showed me what he called the cheaters method for carving the monkey. We used the drill press and drilled three holes where the negative space would be and used the holes to start carving.
The monkey was the first successful project I completed. I made a necklace, then I made one for my friend and my carving days were few and far between after that. As years passed I would carve a monkey every now and again, but never with the same energy as when I was working with my dad that first time.
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I started carving pits again. I approach it with the same awareness as when I was 12. I let the shape of the pit guide the process. I don't cheat anymore, i.e. I just use a knife and a file, no drill press. Peach pits are my meditation. When I'm waiting in line I have something in my pocket that helps me avoid impatience. When my friends turn on a television, I reach in my pocket and find salvation. Each time I find a treasure inside of a discarded seed I recognize the immense wealth of opportunity that abounds in what some view as waste. Here are some photos of recent pit projects.
There are 2 images of each pit, showing both sides. This pit is two spirals each going a different direction and it encouraged me to try to carve a ram in the future.
This pit is an evil owl and an egg.
A squirrel and a bearded face.
You tell me... It doesn't have to be anything...
Another abstract pit. It reminds me of a nose and a banana snake.
A baby cormorant! Made this one on my drive home from Los Angeles over the holidays, and finished it last night.
This is my necklace. A big banana. I put it up because I wanted to show the color the pit changes from the oils of your skin, when you wear the pendant. I don't put any kind of finish because I really like the natural oil finish. It changes colors more and more as you wear it, always evolving.