At long last I'm finished with this! My goal was to create a highly accurate tanto, with all the bells and whistles, as well as experiment with some painting techniques. All I can say is I think I've put more work into this little thing than any katana I've done! Anyways, I won't bore you with all the details and whatnot, but I did want to point out a few highlights. First is my first time ever using menuki, which is that small charm in the wrapping. Also, this is the first time I've used an endcap, and therefore the first time I've used this endknot on the tsukamaki.
As for the painting, I tried working with the paint to create some effects. The first effort was the tsuba, where I used various shades of blue for the shading. And then I tried with the saya to create a ghostly portrait of a village hidden in the mountains shown on the tsuba. The saya designs were based on Japanese paintings. Overall, I tried to keep a unified design, and create a very peaceful, delicate feeling for it.
Well, thanks everyone for all the comments on the previews, I appreciate the feedback and it helps me tremendously. Please feel free to critique the final as well, I love to chat about design and the like. And if you see any flaws, by all means point them right out!
All work (except menuki) is handcarved with absolutely no power tools, using a utility knife, chisel, and handsaws.
All pieces are made of white pine wood. 16" overall length 11" blade / 5" handle Painted with acrylic paints Menuki is sterling silver Sori is 3/8" Ito is 1/4" wide
A fairly typical paladin type warrior; had a lot of fun studying old knights' armor for this guy and am fairly happy with the design. Working the motif of his sigil in to the armor was an interesting challenge; and also dark skin is a ton of fun to paint.