In this second lesson for how-to high relief carve and wood burn a Flying Canada Goose free project we will focus on how wood burning, also called pyrography, can be used in wood carving to clean up high relief undercuts, shape the elements of your carving, and add fine detailing to your project.
I own four different brands of pyrography tools. For this project I will be showing two of those – the Walnut Hollow Versa-Tool and the Optima. I also have a Colwood, which I love and use often for my pyrography scenes.
If you are new to wood burning, if you are not sure that you will be using a wood burning tool often in your crafts I would strongly recommend the Walnut Hollow Versa-Tool as an excellent entry level burner. The price is extremely reasonable and yo can pick one up at most large craft box stores. I tend to keep mine in my carving kit because of its compact size. It is perfect for a quick-to-use burner for what we are about to do.
1. Keep your work area extremely clean. Dispose of any wood chips, sanding dust, and pattern papers, which are all flammable.
2. Work in a well ventilated area, using a small desk fan to move the burning fumes away from your face.
3. Never wood burn any unknown woods, old woods, or painted surfaces. All of these may have chemical treatments or fungus that can be released into the air during burning.
4. Never leave the wood burner on when you are not at your table working. I go a little further and always unplug my burner if I need to get up and leave the area.
5. Start at a low or medium low temperature setting. You can always turn the setting up later if you need more tonal depth.
6. Keep your burning tips clean using a strop and rouge. Bright, clean tips make bright, clean burn lines.
7. You do not need pressure on the tip to create a deep burned line. The temperature of the tool tip will do the work for you.
8. After you have completed your burn clean any loose fibers, carbon dust, and darkly burnt edges with a stiff brush off your work. Those small carbon spots can show up later when you seal your work.
9. As you look through the burning steps for our Canada Goose you will many black and black-brown burn areas. At not time during this project did I have the temp setting so high as to have a bright, red, glowing tip. You do not need to go to red hot to get the best results!