In Wille Sundqvist’s (out of print) book Swedish Carving Techniques he says that carving spoons is a good way to learn design. I’m one heck of a design noob. But I think I might have learned something while carving a few spoons. The photos show the progression in my last four, with the most recent on the right. The three on the right are my best attempt at carving in the Swedish style taught by Wille in his book and by Fred Livesay in a class I took last summer. That style has a sort of keel on the under-side of the handle where it is thin just before the bowl of the spoon. The keel allows the spoon to have a nice profile and still be very strong.
When I look at the handles of the middle two spoons, of the end paddle-like part I think they look aimless, like they’re not going anywhere. On the most recent spoon, each part seems to be doing something, or to have a point, if that makes any sense.