Amazingly Realistic Wood-Burned Portraits of Wildlife


We first spotted these richly detailed and realistic pyrography portraits of animals on Hungeree, but artist Julie Bender‘s stunning works have been widely exhibited for the past several years. Her reverence for nature and wildlife is evident in each of her incredible artworks depicting the quiet moments of creatures big and small. By using heated, pointed stylus tools of various sizes, Julie etches and burns her drawings into cream-colored maple wood. She sometimes uses dense watercolor paper as her backdrop. The shades and tones are created depending on the pressure and strokes that she uses — a technique that requires great precision and control. The gorgeous, amber-colored details of Julie’s heat paintings have an amazing dimension, making flesh and fur seem lifelike and tactile.

If you’re in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area you can check out her portraits in person at the NatureWorks exhibit, which opens March 3. The non-profit organization assists in the development and conservation of wildlife preserves, introduces wildlife into new habitats, and provides wildlife education. Catch a preview of her work in our gallery below.

Take Me with You © Julie Bender

Patiently Waiting © Julie Bender

Contented © Julie Bender

Peruivian Splendor © Julie Bender

Conflict of Interest © Julie Bender

Close to You © Julie Bender

Amazing Grace © Julie Bender

Center of Attention © Julie Bender

Pick One © Julie Bender

Color me Fabulous © Julie Bender