Pattern Making Made Easy

Use an app to find a pose, then add clothes.

Use an app to find a pose, then add clothes

By Dylan Goodson


I have two methods for designing new carvings. When I need to work out the pose, clothing, and details, I sculpt a clay model. (Click here for one method of creating a model.) But for a recent Santa and some of my simpler carvings, I have a shortcut.

I use the Pose Tool 3D app (made by on my smartphone to create a pattern for my Santa. The app is meant to help you draw human figures with correct anatomy from different angles in complex poses.

Here are the simple steps I used to make my pattern:

Step 1: Choose and pose a 3-D figure in the app. It includes options for male and female figures that are old, young, heavy, slender, muscular, or average. You can pose all of the body parts separately. I sometimes look in the mirror to be sure I’m choosing a natural pose.

Step 2: When you are satisfied with the figure, take screenshots of the front, back, and sides. Transfer the images to your computer and print them.

Step 3: Draw the clothing on the pictures of the figure. Use reference materials (i.e., photos of clothes) as needed.

Step 4: Transfer the outline of each pattern to the wood and cut them out with a band saw.


Carve Dylan’s realistic Santa! Look for the pattern in Woodcarving Illustrated Winter 2017 (Issue 81). Click here to order.





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