I like the painting the most now, however carving is a close second (Sanding is dead last)! But in the beginning I hated the paint, kinda the same situation Tom mentioned, the first 3 years or so. What I found out is that you go through cycles as you progress forward in your carvings. Once you think your carvings "right", you realize you cant paint. Then you work on your paint and get the painting "right", then you realize you cant carve! Eventually you go back and forth till you reach a equilibrium point were your painting matches your carving, making the decoy as a whole more enjoyable!