I'm a big fan of poplar, but some is better than others. I saw a 6 ft chuck and home depots last week, and the grain pattern was so amazing that I bought the whole thing.
This is one of the works I have made from it, I really lucked out with the placement on this one. There are lines that feed into the outer corners of both eyes, and another that forms both cheeks. The 3D work really sends the lines meandering, and creates a pretty stunning effect.
1st pic shows rough right off the CNC, 2nd shows it cleaned up and stained. Usually, I would stain the subject and leave the surrounding wood unstained, and apply a clear coat to all.
Did the opposite on this one, as I felt the stain might detract from the grain, so I stained the surrounding wood, and just gave the subject a clear coat.