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How To Make Art With Wood

Why Art With Wood Is So Good

Making art with wood is amazing. The reason why it is so good is due to its versatility. It is a dynamic medium which can be typed as 2d, 2.5d, and true 3d art.

Few art mediums allow for this kind of range in application. I wish to delve into simple applications and then move into more complex ways to use art with wood.

Using Paint For Art With Wood

This is not a personal favorite, I will explain why soon. Nevertheless for an art class with younger kids it makes perfect sense.

A wood shape can be cut from a board in preparation before the art begins. Then the wood is painted through the artistic expression of the individual or child.

celtic deer wood art

The shape can be representational to a real world object if you desire. Whether this be an animal or other idea, it can help introduce basic form in art to those participating.

Why do I not like using paint for art with wood? Being a wood artist I use more exotic species and create far more complex wood art.

I simply see the act of painting as hiding one of the most beautiful parts of the art. Nature itself has created something within the wood grain patterns that cannot be reproduced.

Whittling And Chip Carving For Art With Wood

Whittling and chip carving has been around since mankind began using tools to fashion wooden objects. This still remains an excellent place to begin for an artist learning to make art with wood.

A step beyond this is something called Intarsia wood carving. It is a very beautiful art form that came to be noticed as far back as the Greek and Roman periods.

Later within the Renaissance to the Victorian Era this art with wood would reign as a dominant force. It became a staple of wood artists for many creations from Europe to Asia.

Today kits can be easily had that introduce this art with wood. Few tools are required and it is easy for nearly any age to participate in its creation.

Using A Dremel To Create Art With Wood

A dremel is another safe way to introduce the idea of art with wood to younger generations. Likewise if you are new to applying art to wood it is a good place to start.

A dremel is an effective way to perform very light wood carving. I do suggest to use a power cord option rather than those which run off batteries.

tree of life version 2 wood art

An easy way to begin is by using stencils to create the desired patterns on the wood. After this the dremel is used to remove wood material as desired.

Once complete you can stain, paint, or further develop the art with wood however you see fit. While easy there are drawbacks to this option.

The dremel will not have much power. Light passes are needed to remove wood material and the cuts will be shallow.

Due to the nature of how this tool works it will also be quite difficult to maintain an even smooth surface. The dremel bits actually grind wood material away from the surface rather than cut.

Knowing this using this application for art with wood is best kept to small projects. It still is a good introduction to all that wood can offer.

Using Kinetic Art Or Mobiles For Art With Wood

Wood is an excellent material for creating kinetic art or mobiles. This use of art with wood is a bit more advanced than what one would expect at an entry level.

Essentially kinetic and mobile art allow for the creation to have moving parts. It is a three dimensional object that has been put together by a series of parts.

In short someone who has a mind for building, engineering, or sculpting would find this art form pleasing. More woodworking tools will be needed to perform this art than what most may have.

Understand that this is more than merely making boxes, tables, benches or chairs. The creation is dynamic and often can perform movement of some kind as part of its purpose to the art.

Using A Router For Art With Wood

A router is another simple way to create art with wood. I will place this practice within the intermediate levels of woodworking. I say this due to the fact that it is not for children but maybe older teens.

old ironsides

Using a router allows the artist to begin using bits that cut wood. They can perform shaping and carving functions.

The benefit to the router is that it can follow guided patterns, give consistent and even depth of cut, and leave a smooth surface. In short it is a far more professional finish than what a dremel can produce.

Most art with wood done with this tool will be 2d or 2.5d artwork. The art will also likely be panels, planks, or similar wood pieces used for wall art or signs.

Once the piece is cut it can be sanded, painted, or stained then finished. Templates can be created for reproduction if so desired. Stencils also can work if one does not wish to create guided paths for the router to follow.

Using Wood Chisels To Create Art With Wood

The choice of using wood chisels to create art with wood is among the best options. It can be done with nearly any age range. If the teen is relatively mature and can be trusted with sharp blades, this is far safer than many power tools.

The difficulty of using wood chisels for art with wood is that so many different kinds can be needed. One chisel will have many different variations in size.

humming bird wood art

Having said this it may require a little investment into selecting the chisels that you would need to perform your artwork.

The benefit to using chisels are many. They can provide extreme precision, clean cuts, and allow the artist to leave fine details.

Here you have stepped into the world of wood carving. The results can be anything that you can imagine.

The artist could make signs if desired, or create a full sculpture of flowers, birds, animals, or even people. The only thing which will lack is the practice and skill of the artist to fulfill the creation desired.

I always suggest that anyone who is seeking to make art with wood to at least begin using chisels for wood carving. Allow that skill to grow over time. If you do I know that you will never regret it.

Wood Burning Art With Wood

Wood burning art with wood is a great way to start as a beginner. Keep in mind that I am presenting here only one form of it.

This form is called pyrography and is typically done with a pen. This pen is similar to how a soldering iron works. There the similarity ends.

There are kits one can find that will provide a beginner the basic experience to discover if they enjoy this form of art with wood. After this the more professional versions are still not too expensive to dive into.

The benefit to this art form is that it can be used by nearly any age. Most commonly these tools are used by professionals in order to create highlights of color to sculptures or other wood carvings.

When used properly these accents can bring a carving to life giving it a realistic appearance. The definition of the carving stands out as a result of this method in ways it otherwise could never do.

Using Cnc Applications For Art With Wood

Using a cnc application for art with wood is truly one of the more advanced methods one could select. In short very few people ever will go down this path.

I give it a worthy mention here simply due to the degree of complexity in what it can provide for wood art and the wood artist. If you are a beginner the fact is you may never encounter this level of machinery.

For professionals the tool is often used as a means of roughing out the wood preparing it for wood carving. It is a huge time saver for creating parts, or preparing the surface of the material.

Alternative Forms Of Art With Wood

There are many other forms of creating art with wood. In fact there are really too many to mention here. Wood burning within its many varieties is one example.

Likewise using a lathe for wood turning is one very common application of art with wood. I have not included these methods within this article for good reasons.

In wishing to provide an introduction to art with wood I wished to remain with the safer applications. Each I have mentioned with the exception of cnc applications could be used with minimal tools.

If one has a shop of any kind it is likely you would have some kind of table saw, scroll saw, router, and a dremel. These are foundational tools that can be found anywhere and easily online used.

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