Painting a Color Wheel for Pyrography, Gourd Art, and Wood Carving

Painting a Color Wheel for Pyrography, Gourd Art, and Wood Carving


I admit it – I am a craft supply hoarder! I love craft supplies and can barely walk past a sale on colored pencils, brush packs, paper mache pieces, craft paints, or carving wood bundles. My studio is full of banker boxes, stuffed to the brim with supplies just waiting for me in case I get that flash of inspiration.

Painting a Color Wheel for Pyrography, Gourd Art, and Wood Carving

But when it comes to working with craft paints I really only need five colors on my table – cadmium medium red, cadmium medium yellow, ultramarine blue, titanium white, and carbon black. Those five are the three primary colors plus the color for no coloration – white, and the color for all colors together – black.

I do include three more colors in my basic color kit – cadmium medium orange, bright green, and dioxide purple. These are the secondary colors and I use them so often it is easiest for me to use pre-mixed colors.

In the photo, below, there are six colors lines up in front of the desk lamp – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. Adding black and white to the set all of the color mixes that appear of the palette plates in the foreground can be quickly mixed to use on your new wood carving, pyrography, or gourd project.

All those other paint bottles in the background are unnecessary to creating a full, working palette of hues, tones, and pastels.

But, they are fun to have on hand especially if you are like me, a craft supply hoarder.

The photos for each step are shown above that step.


Wax-coated paper plates or Styrofoam plates
Palette knife
2 bowls of water
Paper towels
Assorted flat shader brushes, sizes #4 – #10
Frisket film, 12” x 12”
12” x 12” x 18” birch plywood board
220-grit sandpaper
6 – 8” square of brown kraft paper
Graphite tracing paper
#2 to #6 artist pencil
Painter’s tape or masking tape
Craft knife, bench knife, or chip carving knife
Glitter Duck Tape – 4 pieces, 1″ wide x 15″ long
Acrylic Spray Sealer
Assorted Metallic Gel Pens
Solid Tone Gel Pens

Cadmium red
Cadmium orange
Cadmium yellow
Chromium oxide green
Ultramarine blue
Dioxide purple
Assorted gel pens


The list of color names in the above supply list are the traditional artist quality, professional color names. Most paint manufacturers use the chemical-based name for their artist color lines, whether those colors are acrylics, watercolors, or oils. So the manufacturer will name their pure hue red Cadmium Medium Red for each different line of paint.

Craft paints, made for the hobby market, have their own specific names for their hues, tones, and color shades depending on the manufacturer. One company may call the pure hue red color Fire Engine Red, while another names the same color Apple Red and a third might name theirs Candy Cane Red.

When you purchase your craft colors please refer to the manufacturer’s color chart, which shows all of the colors in that line of paint. Chose the purest hues possible, regardless of the name of any particular paint color.

Painting a Color Wheel for Pyrography, Gourd Art, and Wood Carving


My project was worked using the Apple Barrel craft paint line manufactured by Plaid. These colors are inexpensive and readily available. My local WalMart carries several lines of Plaid craft paints.

From left to right: Apple Barrel Craft Paints
20501E Bright Red = Cadmium red
21961E Outrageous Orange = Cadmium orange
20513E Bright Yellow = Cadmium yellow
20361E Bright Green = Chromium oxide green
20596E Cobalt Blue = Ultramarine blue
20595E Concord Grape = Dioxide purple
20503E White
21885E Jet Black

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: