Natural Spiral Knot Walking Cane

Sometimes I find a piece of wood that I try to work as little as possible – usually for wands since I come across small interestingly shaped pieces than larger ones. If memory serves, which it might not, this was cut from the small patch of woods growing (mostly maple) near my house where some sort of vine grew along the small tree creating the nice spiral. I stripped away the bark then sanded it and after deciding to leave it as is applied some boiled linseed oil. It is on the smaller side measuring 50” or 4’2” making more of a cane or walking stick than a staff.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Chi Rho Templar Staff

The idea behind this piece is if a Templar Knight retired and tended to a farm this would be the staff he used. The top has a subtle natural spiral that I wanted to leave intact and to possibly serve as the hand grip (depending on your height and preference). Below the spiral I wood burned the “chi rho” and ichthys symbols, on the reverse I wood burned a Templar cross. Below those are “alpha” and “omega” followed by “INRI” and “IHS” and a runic script which reads “Milites Christi” on the respective sides. There’s also a strand of leather rawhide with a rune charm I found and thought would be fitting: “Nyd,” meaning “endurance, survival, and destiny. I then used a spray acrylic sealer and boiled linseed oil to preserve and protect the wood. Some of the oil also got onto the rawhide and darkened it slightly, but came out looking better. Boiled linseed oil isn’t typically supposed to be used on rawhide, but shouldn’t cause any problems for a static piece on a staff. It has a slight bend to it and measures 58″ tall.

 

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Pyrite Petroglyph Staff

A more modest petroglyph staff with symbols found in rock carvings from around the world: some symbols like the spiral are fairly universal, but a good number of these are found in the Southwestern areas of the US. The meaning of many petroglyphs remain obscure to this day, some claim they depict shamanic rituals while others say they show evidence of ancient astronauts. The symbols here were created with various paint pens. A piece of pyrite bordered by black rawhide crowns the top of the staff and then the entire 4’8“ piece was given a few coatings of acrylic sealer to protect the paint from running and from overall weathering.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Spiraled Spalting Wand

Here’s another experimental and single piece wand where the blade and haft are a solid piece of wood. I wanted to keep practicing my modest wood carving abilities with this one. There’s some light carving on the base of the haft and a spiral running the length of the blade and wound with copper wire. The haft also has a wrapping of waxed hemp under black rawhide. The roughly 12” long wand of spalting wood also has a coating of boiled linseed oil for preservation.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Natural Beaver Chew Wand with Blue Jay Feathers

The blade and haft are a single piece of river wood and, as evidenced by the teeth marks and pointed tips, debark by beavers. I then used different colored yarn for the patterns. The black, red, yellow, and white bands were inspired by the medicine wheel found in numerous native North American cultures with each color representing one of the four the cardinal directions. Each band is bordered by smaller blue bands I intended to represent rivers, lakes, the seas and the overall importance of water. Below those is a crosshatch pattern of dark and light green, blue, and orange on a background of white meant to symbolize the interplay between earth, water, fire, and air. The blade is coated with boiled linseed oil and comes to just under 24” in length. A strand of pyrite, turquoise, and skull beads capped with found blue jay feathers is attached to the midpoint of the wand. The patterns on the haft have also been given a thin layer of acrylic sealer for some protection against weathering.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Vines and Flowers Magic Wand

Another experimental wand: I wanted to try out some simple wood carving and find a medium for smaller, more detailed designs and metallic pens work quite well. It’s two separate pieces of wood joined together. I also used an acrylic sealer to protect the flowers and vines from rubbing off and to preserve the wood. There’s also a terminated quartz crystal embedded in the haft and wound with colored hemp twine for added cohesion, both physical and aesthetic. And including the embedded crystal comes to just under 15” in length. It’s also lightweight in case you’re ever inclined to carry it with you someplace.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Dinosaur Fossil Hiking Stick 2

This is the second dinosaur fossil hiking stick that I’ve made, it’s one of my favorite styles. On this staff, going from top to bottom, are the fossil skeletons of a tyrannosaurus rex, a plesiosaur, and dilophosaurus created with a wood-burner. It stands at about 57” and has several coats of polyurethane to preserve and protect the wood.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Natural Wand

The wood of this wand is most likely birch, but was difficult to be certain because it’s also a “beaver chew,” also called a “beaver stick,” and has had the bark chewed off. But this process has left clear tooth marks on parts of the wand’s blade. The point of the wand was also created naturally by beavers.

Continuing with the strong natural theme of this wand I attached a quartz crystal to the bottom of the haft and used vines to help keep it secure. I also attached feathers I found, one from a blue jay, a cardinal, and a small yellow bird -probably some kind of finch. There’s a little detailing done with a wood-burner and bands of yellow, blue, and red hemp to match the colors of each feather.

It’s about 13.5” long and polished with boiled linseed oil.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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“Wanderer” Hiking Stick

This is one of a series of projects I did with a more minimalist aesthetic. I tried some ideas I hadn’t tried before like leaving some of the bark on the wood to create a different look. The polyurethane coats enhanced the different shades on the bark making it look like chocolate and vanilla marble cake.

There’s only limited wood-burning on this staff: the diagonal lines bordering the bark hand-grip; a compass star; and the words “Not All Who Wander Are Lost.” On the opposite side is a leaf preserved and attached with polyurethane. It stars at about 61” tall and has a good weight that makes it sturdy, but still light enough to use while hiking.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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Small Ægishjálmur and Elder Futhark Hiking Stick

This staff is about 53” tall and made from a piece of river wood, more specifically a “beaver chew,” or “beaver stick.” Beavers removed the bark from the wood by chewing it off and although the light sanding and polyurethane coats have obscured many of the toothmarks, some still remain visible.

I wood-burned the Nordic rune “Ægishjálmur” twice at the top and was meant to protect the wearer in battle. Originally I wanted to do a Nordic compass, it looks similar, but it’s a little more detailed and would have been much more difficult to do given the size of my wood-burner. Going down the staff on each side is the Elder Futhark rune set with each one representing a letter, a number, and would be used in divination.

Artist: J.R. Goslant

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