Woodgrain, all day.

We started woodgrain exercises for both finished and aged wood. Right now they don’t lo like too much but tomorrow we will be adding in all the highlights and shading so I’m ready to make things pop!

Here’s some helpful hits I surmised today:
for your base coat, wet blend at least two colors, and make sure all your brush strokes are going in the same direction as your grain.

The next step is to have a sample of the type of wood grain you are trying to emulate. The pease of e day was “thin grain, thin space, wide grain wide space”. The rule of thumb is that when the grain is thinner the grain is very tight and close together, while when the grain widens the spaces between the grain widen as well. It also helps to use your brush as you would a calligraphy tool when doing the knots and wider grains. We were using a husky brush, much like a fitch except the bristles were aligned to create thin lines. When focusing on a section of all thin lined grain you can use a regular lay-in brush whose bristles separate easily.

After you apply the grain you begin adding details, such as glazes imitating the stain of finish wood, or highlights and speckles for aged wood.

All I can say is practice makes perfect. Every scenic artist needs to know how to woodgrain, you’d be hard pressed to find a theatre season that doesn’t use it.