Wood Carving Celtic Dragon 3

Wood Carving Celtic Dragon 3

Over the last two days we have worked on a relief wood carving project featuring a Celtic knot dragon pattern.  Today we will walk through the simple and easy painting steps to give this basswood carving the look of stone.

Wood Carving Celtic Dragon 1
Wood Carving Celtic Dragon 2
Wood Carving Celtic Dragon 3

Celtic Dragon Wood Carving by Lora IrishPreparing the carving for painting

14.  Basswood is an easy to carve wood that has a very clear, white coloring.  Because basswood is very porous it is does not take oil based stains well without the use of a pretreatment sealer as polyurethane or spray sealer.  For our project I used acrylic craft paints to create the stone effect.

Supplies:

Acrylic craft paints in:
Titanium White
Carbon Black
Payne’s Gray
Burnt Umber
Burnt Sienna
Driftwood oil stain
Water bowl
Glass tile, palette paper, or tin foil
Paper towels
Clean, soft cloth
Assorted soft-bristle paintbrushes
Splatter brush or old toothbrush
Masking tape or painter’s tape
220-grit sandpaper
Polyurethane spray sealer

More information on painting your wood carvings.

using a primer coat when painting a wood carvingPrimer coat for relief wood carving

15.  Begin by using painter’s tape along the uncut 1/4″ margin surrounding the carving.  Cut long pieces, place into position, and press firmly.  The painter’s tape will protect these areas from coloring.

Place a small amount of titanium white, Payne’s gray, and burnt umber on a glass tile. Thin each color with an equal amount of clean water.

Brush two wash coats of titanium white on the carved area of the plaque. Because you mixed equal parts paint and water, this coat will not give full, solid coverage.

While the titanium white coats are still damp, pick up a small amount of Payne’s gray and mix it with the titanium white on your tile. Working along the diagonal of the plaque,  brush a few random strokes of the gray/white mix over the white background. Pick up a little more Payne’s gray, mix it with the titanium white on your tile, and apply it to the carving.

Next, add a small touch of burnt umber to the gray/white mix and repeat. Add a small amount of burnt sienna to the mix and repeat. Your background should now contain many  shades of white, gray, and brown. Allow these coatings to dry for about half an hour .

splatter painting a relief wood carvingSplatter the carving with fine paint dots

16.  Clean your glass tile, and then place a small amount of each paint color on the tile. Do not thin these colors with water. Working one color at a time, use an old stiff toothbrush or splatter brush to splatter a coat of each color on the carving.  Do this by picking up a small amount of color on the end of the splatter brush. Hold the brush a few inches from the surface of the carving, and pull your thumb across the top of the brush. This action will spray a fine mist of paint drops over the carving. Thin the paint with a few drops of water if you wish to create a fine spray with small droplets.

Painting the routed border

17.  Remove the tape from the edges of the carving. Brush two thinned wash coats of titanium white on the routed border edges of the plaque. Streak this area with a mix of titanium white and Payne’s gray, just as you did with the center of the carving. Allow the carving to dry overnight.

Creating a vintage look to your painted carving

18.  After you have completed the painting steps and allowed the paint to dry , sand the carved areas, background, and routed edges of the plaque using 220-grit sandpaper to remove some paint from the high areas of the carving. Sand lightly in some areas to remove one or two layers of color; in other areas, sand the carving back to the raw wood. Clean the dust from the board using a soft, dry cloth.

Seal the work with two coats of polyurethane spray sealer. Allow the sealer to dry thoroughly. Following the manufacturer’s instructions to apply an oil-based stain to the carving . Wipe away the excess oil stain with a soft, clean cloth. Allow the stain to dry overnight. Seal the work with one to two light coats of polyurethane spray sealer. Remember to sign and date the back of the plaque when finished.

I hope you have enjoyed this in-depth step-by-step free relief wood carving project and will take the time to browse through the other free online relief carving projects by Lora Irish that we have posted on our blog.

Thank you for visiting – Lora Irish!

Lora Irish celtic knot pattern129_150x150Celtic knot patterns by Lora S Irish
Celtic CrossesCeltic Dragon KnotCeltic Knots 2

Celtic Knot Carving Patterns by Lora S Irish, ArtDesignsStudio.com