We’re all familiar with the idea of sighting down the length of a board to check for straightness of line. It is amazing how well our eyes can pick up even slight deviations in the flow of a line when viewed from such a vantage point. I use this concept all of the time when carving bowls, sighting along curves to check for fairness and flow.
When we look down a curving road, we can sense the flow of the curves through imagined movement along them. Likewise, when I look along the lines and surfaces of a bowl, I find my head and shoulders moving as if I am in miniature gliding along the surface. Maybe that’s weird, but I don’t have to stand in an amusement park line, and somehow it helps me to understand the forms.
I just finished a walnut bowl that features several flowing lines and surfaces, the one I was working on in the top photo. Here are a few other photos of the finished bowl: