Blazin Engravins Woodburning
Pyrography, coming from the Greek words “Pyr”, meaning fire, and “Grapho”, meaning writing, is the fine art of burning images onto wood. This process has many advantages over other methods of depicting images, in that it gives a very strong sense of depth. It allows a great range of natural tones and shades to be achieved - beautiful subtle effects can create a picture in sepia tones, or strong dark strokes can make a bold, dramatic design.
The process has been practiced by a number of cultures including the Egyptians and some African tribes since the dawn of recorded time. In the late 19th Century, a Melbourne architect by the name of Alfred Smart discovered that water-based paint could be applied hot to wood by pumping benzoline fumes through a heated hollow platinum pencil. This improved the pokerwork process by allowing the addition of tinting and shading that previously were impossible. In the early 20th century, the development of the electric pyrographic hot wire wood etching machine further automated the pokerwork process. Pyrography is also a traditional folk art in many European countries, including Romania, Hungary, as well as countries such as Argentina in South America.