I spent time this summer getting frustrated over several complex carvings that didn't work out well and have either been set aside, or thrown in the scrap pile. To break through the block, yet keep my hands busy, I completed a couple of simpler carvings. Here is one- an ojime of three beans. My wife Emily asked one day what I was carving and I told her "three beans" and then showed her the model I made of three actual black beans superglued together. She then asked why I didn't just offer the three glued beans as art and skip the carving.
Of note, my beans are about 120% the size of the model. A half inch or so. They are carved from a piece of scrap repurposed ivory I had- the grain is fairly coarse, but I think it lends a nice visual texture- after dyeing and polishing.