Sometimes when working stone I come across colouration or marks, and these can help, or hinder a sculpture, depending on where they appear. It is one of the joys of working with a natural raw material.
Sometimes too I find little fossils, of what look like seed pods, and pieces like leaves or vegetation. These little treasures don't appear very often, but they can alter the direction of carving and test creative ingenuity.
There was nothing to be done however when I found this lump - the carving was abandoned and begun again with a new piece of stone - and this 'shape' is all that is left of the original piece, a natural sculpture.
It must have been a swirl of different material laid down as the stone was forming, and then caught in the sediment forever - well, until now. It is about ten inches high with beautiful iron ore colouring and shale stripes. When selecting stone for sculpture I try and avoid blocks with potential 'problems' but there was nothing on the outside of this piece to suggest it contained a surprise gift.