Working at cabinet shops after graduating from the Furniture Technician program at Algonquin College, he started burning his names onto projects he was working on, using a cheap woodburner. “I quickly realized that I could burn pretty much anything into a piece of wood,” says Chris Bennett of Champstiles Woodburning Toronto. Using a woodburning tool - think a metal tipped pen that burns wood- Chris has been a pyrography artist for six years: “It is pretty close to the pace and techniques used for tattooing,” he says. “Woodburning takes quite a bit of patience, requires a steady hand and uses a lot of shading techniques.” Elaborating on tattoos, Chris jokes that this is his way he can give back to the trees after working as a woodworker, “Maybe giving them rad tattoos and making them beautiful again will help me repent.”
For this who couldn’t get enough of this Whitby artist’s work at OSI’s Grand Opening, Chris’s work can be seen at Jimmy Chiale’s 416 Gallery at 404 Queen St. East in Toronto; he is also a committee member of the Canadian Alternative Arts Collective.
“I love showing people my modern twist on an ancient craft, and will be burning trees for a long, long time to come.”