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Do you Feel the Smell of Burning Wood? Pyrography Box Beta

Santa brought me the gift I wanted for Christmas: a pyrograph. In case you don't know, a pyrograph is a tool to draw over wood, by burning it.

As you may already know, I love drawing (in particular, ink drawing). This is similar: you don't have a lot of control over tone and a mistake can ruin the drawing.

This was the first time I used one, and to test how it worked I decided to draw a Celtic knot over a wooden box. In the central part I tried a little shading and leaving open areas to get other types of tones. I started with the upper left knotted area, then the center, right and ended with the circle and border. I still have to clean the pencil drawing from the pyrography box, add some detail in the front and add some varnish.

Some tips when starting to use a pyrograph:
  • Trace the contour first, then fill it. It is far easier, and the burn from the trace prevents the burn from the filling to spread to the rest.
  • Move quickly, move constantly. If you stop for too long (to get a darker color) you can end with smoked areas (like in the left upper edge). Better to make repeated passes.
  • When you start, a Celtic knot is a good option: it is easy (only filled areas) and looks good.
  • Adjust the power of your pyrograph. My pyrograph has a scale from 0 to 10. I used 5 in the first area (where I got the smokey part) and then switched to 3 for the rest, except the brownish strings in the center know which were done at 0.6
I'm considering buying some books on pyrography from The Book Depository, but I'm still undecided. The two options are:
Which one do you think looks better? And what do you think of my first (still unfinished) box?

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Written by Ruben Berenguel