For my one-of-a-kind game boards and tables, the designs are first laid out on paper, and then line-by-line they are transfered to the wooden surfaces by hand in pencil. Next, the outlines are inked in, and the design is colored by hand with a combination of various inks, paints and stains. I often choose inks and stains which are not opaque, so that the beauty of the underlying wood grain is still visible through the color, and to give the illusion of being marquetry. Then, the artwork is sprayed with several very light coats of polyurethane to provide an initial protective layer that seals the colors without causing them to smear, or bleed. It is then sealed with numerous coats of good quality brushed-on polyurethane to provide a thorough protective cover over the entire piece.
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