Hawk and trowel drywall texture
The terms hawk and trowel refer to two tools used in plaster stucco and cement finishing applications. The hawk refers to a 16" by 16" flat table like plate with a handle underneath protruding perpendicular to the hawk surface. The material is placed on the hawk in a small mound. The trowel is a flat rectangle metal trowel with a handle extending parallel to the angle of the trowel. Material is moved from the hawk to the wall with a quick motion scraping the material onto the trowel and subsequently to the wall.
In reference to drywall finishing, the hawk and trowel are rarely used in taping and finishing drywall. Most tapers use pans and knives. However drywall texture is applied with a hawk and trowel creating a unique style of texture that is determined by the tradesman's experience and technique.
Click on the images below for larger examples
Hawk and trowel texture can be described as layers of drywall mud flowing over other layers of drywall mud. It can resemble waves in water or more random circles of mud. The variation of texture style is controlled much by the thickness of the material used. When hiring a tradesman to do a hawk and trowel texture for you it would be wise to first see samples of their work since hawk and texture styles can vary greatly among tradesmen.
Here are some pictures of a hawk and trowel drywall texture applied using very thick drywall mud.
A paint roller was also used when applying the mud. Drywall mud was rolled lightly onto the surface to provide a background layer of very light texture. Then a hawk and trowel was used to add larger areas of mud and flatten out their surfaces.