Some time ago I bought a bunch of patterns (from L. Irish) because it helps me stretch my imagination of what kind of patterns I want to teach in the Pyro Cafe and help me practice my skill. In that pattern set are Arrowhead Deer. What you see are the almost finished creations - I am going to do one more layer of pyrography before giving it a coat of polyacrylic. I am going to share with you my process!
Just a note, these are burned on a 1-inch thick poplar board that had been sitting in a barn for a long time. After I traced the rough outline, my partner cut it for me into the shape that I needed. After that, I pencil in the edges that would need to be carved. I started with a Dremel before settling down on the carving tool which was a lot easier to use than expected and gave me the effect I was wanting to achieve. This took about an hour each.
Once all the carving was complete, I attached the graphite paper again lining it up to match the outlines and tracing the basic details for the wood-burning. As you can see I started with the rope and then went into the feathers. This worked really well when I started working on the deer and creating the contrast I was working towards. Feathers are great for practice too as they just use lines and. My biggest tip is that you work from the shaft and quill out and then do the same thing from the edge towards the shaft and quill. This worked really well for this effect.
I didn't take as many pictures of the second deer but worked it the same first the rope, then the feathers, and the deer was the final section. For the deer fur, I did small zig-zag lines in the direction of how the fur should go. I usually have a lot of reference photos for me to look at while wood-burning animals. After I was satisfied, I added a smidgen of white with an oil pencil and rubbed that in with a pencil shader.
I didn't know how this would come out as I never really carved before and knew that I had to make sure that the cutout was precise so I could attach the pattern for tracing. I am thrilled with how these came out and as I mentioned in the beginning there are some final touch-ups I will do before adding that coat of protection.
I was born in Bad Homburg, Germany. Growing up in foster care I spend a lot of time alone creating art or writing stories. In 1992, when I became pregnant, I discovered crochet and emersed myself in the craft. I also immigrated to the US and throughout the years, I explored various mediums of art – such as macrame, cross-stitch, and painting - while raising my kids. In 2005, I wanted to create my own wood beads and discovered the wood-burner and fell in love with it. It’s at the same time I had the nudge to start my handmade business part-time with the intention to be full-time someday.
But life derailed for a little while, as I became a special needs parent, enrolled in online college twice, and am the proud owner of a B.S. in Accounting and an M.S. in Mental Health Counseling – which eventually led me to start my coaching + consulting business.
Throughout the years I kept coming back to three mediums: coloring, crochet, and wood-burning, and am now balancing two businesses! With most of the kids creating their own lives and only the youngest left, I get to create art and teach people how to make art, while also helping people with their goals. It’s having the cake and eating it too!
I live in Central Virginia with tons of inspiration out of my backyard, the blue ridge mountains, and the events I attend!