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Chattanooga artist uses heat to create wooden art

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Many artists use paper or canvas to hold their creations, but in one Chattanooga studio, a different set of tools is setting one artists' work apart. The hallway in front of Hollie Berry's studio is lined with her creations.

But once you go inside, her method kind of clicks. "Normally fire is a destructive force so to be able to create something new out of fire is even more satisfying," says Berry.

Armed with a blow torch and untreated plywood, Hollie makes the image on her computer, come to life, no paint included. "I burn to make the dark and all the lights I keep the base color of the wood."

When the idea first sparked, she was ready for disaster. "Lots of buckets of water and fire extinguishers and blankets to put out what I thought inevitable be a bonfire."

But quickly found her inspiration. Today, it's this picture of a local fire dancer. After just a few minutes, the image starts to take shape, burned into the wood with the precision of a steady hand.

But sometimes, you just need a bigger tool and a helping hand.

And once her projects have cooled, Hollie hopes it's what the pieces project, and not how they're made, that leave a lasting impression. "It's really satisfying when I see someone else looking at my work... and they tell me they can see the expression I was putting into the work."

For more on Berry's work, click here to visit her website.

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