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Carvings for television

Image © Drive Through Productions

Making carvings for television productions is often a very interesting challenge. Deadlines are usually very tight indeed and so a lot of confidence in a range of carving skills is needed to deliver the commissioned pieces in time and on brief. The small sculpture shown above was commissioned for ‘Hollington Drive‘, a drama series shown on ITV in 2021. This production also featured several other specially-made sculptures, including these insects:

Image © Drive Through Productions

At the same time that these were being made, I happened to be asked to create some props for ‘Becoming Elizabeth‘, a period drama about the early years of Queen Elizabeth the First. These included some small models of ships, to be seen in a scene involving naval strategy.

Naval stategy models for Becoming Elizabeth

Much larger were the two full-sized oak execution blocks that were commissioned for the same production. Why two? One was used for general scenes and the other, which was painted and carved to be identical, had a large cutout section. When a character was shown being beheaded, the actor would drop into this gap and then the head coming off was added afterwards using CGI.

execution blocks

I have also made carvings for a television production starring Clarke Peters and Lindsay Duncan called ‘Truelove‘. Ken, the character played by Peters, carves birds. I was briefed to create small carvings of birds in a particular style that were in various stages of completion.

Small wooden carvings of birds in. various stage of completion. carvings are props for television production.

As part of the production process, Clarke Peters visited my workshop and we chatted about knife carving techniques. He was good company and a pretty good carver already!

Clarke Peters is carving a small sculpture with a knife and smiling. Alistair Park looks on