Wood burning has quite a few unique qualities that make it stand out from all other art forms.
I asked an entire group of wood burners and the first response was the smell. I have said this over and over, but the smell reminds me of a campfire. It doesn’t smell like smoke (if you’re wondering) but an earthy aroma.
Tell me. When was the last time someone told you they wood burned for a hobby? Crickets. That is because it has been around for such a long time, but not many people try it out. There is a lot of art out there, but none of them have you painting with heat.
Color or no color. Mushrooms? Check. Leather? Check. Wood? Obviously, check. Bamboo? Check. Paper? Check. Cork? Check. It is a hobby that can adapt to anyone’s tastes.
SKILL OVER COST.
Many hobbies require a lot of materials and machines. This one starts off with a cheap burner at $35. It comes down to practicing your art and improving your skill.
There is too much noise out there. We hear the ding of emails, the baby crying (or is that only me), the laundry going, coworkers griping. This requires you to slow down, take your time and relax through it all.
IT TEACHES PATIENCE.
You cannot turn the heat to the highest degree and expect your burn to have the depth and detail it deserves. When I first called about getting my wood burner, I asked about temperature settings. The guy said, “Keep in the mid-range and just do layers.” It really does require you to wait until the burn is the depth and darkness you want it to be. It might take a few layers.
IT CAN BE AN ART OR CRAFT.
Whether you are just dabbling or have been doing this art form a while, wood burning can make art or a craft. Whether you are an experienced artist and recreate realistic photos through pyrography, or if you are making a welcome sign for your front door, it still counts as wood burning.
IT OPENS UP YOUR MIND ABOUT THE WAY YOU SEE WOOD.
Is your neighbor cutting down that annoying tree in their backyard? The first thought comes to slicing it up for wood burning. You know that ugly wooden table that has been sitting there for years? Sand it and burn it. Not only what you can do with wood, but which wood you prefer based on the softness and grains.
EVEN IF YOU CAN’T DRAW, YOU COULD WOOD BURN.
Seriously. Think about all the things you hold in your hand as a tool. Pen? Pencil? Marker? If you can use any of those items, you can wood burn. One girl from the group said that she is a makeup artist and simply uses the wood burner just like she would a brush.
I have tried crocheting, knitting, cross-stitching, painting, drawing, and many other crafty avenues. None of them have stuck with me like this one.
Did we all convince you to start wood burning? When I say “we all” I am meaning an entire community of wood burners that answered these questions from their perspective. I guess you would have to try it to believe everyone from the group.
Check out my wood burned and painted pieces here.
Photo by : Christa O’Brien Photography