Simple Shading in Wood Burning Daisy Pattern

The long, pull shading strokes is a basic shading texture used in realistic styled wood burnings.  This stroke is made with the variable temperature unit spear shader or curved edge shader, or with the universal wide-wedge tip for one temperature tools.  In this free online pyrography project we will work a small, simple daisy line pattern using the long, pull shading stroke.

Pyrography Mask Project by IrishThis practice board was prepared as part of the free online Ceremonial Mask Pyrography Project by Lora Irish.

Long, pulled shading stroke

Using a wide, flat burning tip as the spear shader or curved edge shader, set the edge of your shader on the practice board and with slow, even motion pull the shader through the area to be burned.  The pen tip will naturally begin the line burn with a dark tonal value.  As you pull the tip edge across the board the tip will lose heat and the tonal value of the stroke will fade.  This creates a simple line that starts dark and gradually goes to a very pale tone.

The time you allow the pen tip to lie on the wood at the beginning of this stroke determines how dark the tonal value will be.  In the sample squares below the first, left hand, square was worked with a quick, flowing start to  the stroke.  The second, center, square the edge of the shader was set then pulled across the board.

long pull shading stroke for wood burning

Practice board daisy pattern

This practice board sample, using a daisy pattern, was worked in three layers of burning.  All of the shading in the daisy petal, leaves, and stems was worked using the spear shader and the long, pulled shading stroke.


Step 1 – Sand your board, trace your pattern

Lightly sand your practice board with 220- to 320- grit sandpaper, remove any sanding dust with a dry, clean cloth.  Trace your pattern to the wood.

Step 2 – Map your tonal value shading areas

Set your wood burning unit to a medium-low or low-medium temperature setting.  Using the spear shader and following the photo below, work a layer of long, pull strokes into the design.  In the petals start your stroke where the petal is closest to the flower center or where it tucks under another petal.  The shading for the leaves begins at the central vein of the leave and is pulled towards the outer edge.  In the darkest toned leave areas a second set of long, pulling strokes are worked from the leaf edge towards the first central vein lines.

long pull shading 2

Step 3 – Deepen your tonal values with a new layer of strokes

Working one layer of burning over another deepens the tonal values of an area.  You can slowly, and carefully develop the exact shades of sepia you want by working in layers.   In the photo, below, a second layer of long, pill strokes has been worked.  The temperature setting has been raised slightly to a medium to mid-medium setting.  Even on such a low temperature setting, the second layer has created very dark tonal values in several areas of the pattern.

The flower center is surrounded with a ring of small flowers or fuzz.  A touch-and-lift dot pattern has been worked to imply the center spots of those small flowers.  You can use your spear shader tip to create this dot pattern, it will burn very small black triangles.

long pull shading 3

Step 4 – Add low  temperature accent and detailing lines

For this simple daisy pattern two layers of shading was enough to create pale, medium, and dark tonal shades inside the petals and leaves.  To separate the unburned white areas of the petal tips from the unburned background wood ,set your temperature setting to a low heat.  Using either the ball tip or looped tip pen create thin, pale lines along these areas.

Do not completely outline all of your pattern lines.   When the petal or leave starts to show a burned tonal value along the outer edge stop your accent line.  The shading is enough to define that area of the pattern.

Add the inside detail lines – the fold lines in the petals, the vein lines in your leaves.

long pull shading 4

Free pyrography daisy line pattern

daisy practice pattern



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