Monday, September 27, 2010

Ah, the burn of a good cigar... box, that is.

I picture one of my early ancestors, thousands of years ago, forging a metal spear point out of bronze and laying the hot metal object down on a piece of wood. “Hey, would ya look at that!” he would say, as the hot metal spear point burned a design into the wood. Thus, the art of wood burning or pyrography was born.

As crude as that early experience might have been, my recent experiences have not been much better. I have taken up the art of pyrography, which means I have invested in a decent burner transformer unit, a few tips of assorted shapes and a tip holder pen. I’m just a beginner, and still in the experimentation stage, but I’m starting to really enjoy this new hobby.

I am very fortunate to have a cigar superstore about 5 miles from my house. They sell empty wooden cigar boxes for one dollar each, ten for $6.00. There are sitting in a huge crate right near the entrance to the store, which doesn’t seem to stay full very long. I’ve been stocking up on boxes for several months now. Some of these boxes are very well made out of solid exotic woods with beautifully crafted box joint corners. Why do I feel like I’ve just given away my secret? Oh well, there are lots of boxes to go around.


This new interest of mine combines art with recycling, which makes me feel good about the enterprise in general. I’m still not sure what I will be doing with the finished boxes, but Christmas is coming up and they might make good gifts.

Have you ever tried pyrography? Have you ever tried to turn old cigar boxes into new works of art?

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey Dad, these boxes look really great. Did you use some photography trick to make them look that good? I hear you can do anything with photoshop these days. I'll be happy to take one or two off your hands. You should burn your mark on the underside of the lid and then set up a table and sell them. I am picturing a high shine finish coating on them like high gloss polyeurathane or something like shilac. But I am guessing you are more about a simple stain if at all, right?

-Dave

Joyce said...

John,
Beautiful boxes! And the wood burning sounds intriguing. I use cigar boxes for some mixed media dolls and have had a hrad time finding them here. You Lucky Dog!!
Miss you,
Peace,
Joyce

Anonymous said...

Great job on the cigar boxes! I have a question for you, how do you prep your cigar boxes...sanding 1st then pyro on top of smooth surface? I would like to try to make one for my husband for Christmas....here is my email addy if you could kindy reply
luvnlife2@hotmail.com
thanks in advance,