Synaptic Mycelium: Handcrafted Artistry Meets Acoustic Precision (Video Below)

This is a Martin X Series acoustic/electric guitar, which has undergone a transformation into a piece of functional art by Michael “Dig” O’Neal from Sacred Fire Arts, renowned for his woodburning craftsmanship.

Design and Craftsmanship:

The guitar’s surface features a mesmerizing design known as “Synaptic Mycelium,” woodburned by hand with intricate detail that replicates the interconnected nature of fungal networks.

The pattern covers the guitar’s body, showcasing the natural grain of the wood and creating a harmonious blend of organic forms.

Materials and Techniques:

The guitar, likely a DX1AE or a comparable model from the Martin X Series, serves as a canvas for the woodburning artistry.

The method used by Sacred Fire Arts involves carefully applying controlled burns to the wood to create varying shades and textures, a technique that requires steady hands and a keen eye for detail.

Unique Characteristics:

Due to the handcrafted nature of the design, each guitar produced with this technique is unique.

Variations in the wood grain and the hand-applied burning process ensure that no two guitars are exactly alike, offering a one-of-a-kind instrument to musicians and collectors alike.

Functionality and Aesthetics:

While the visual appeal of the guitar is undeniable, it’s also important to note that the acoustic and electric capabilities of the instrument are preserved.

The woodburning is superficial and does not affect the sound quality or playability of the guitar, maintaining the high standards of the Martin brand.

Considerations for Woodworkers:

Creating a piece like this requires not only artistic skill but also a deep understanding of the wood’s properties and how it reacts to heat.

Woodworkers looking to explore such designs must consider the type of wood, the thickness of the surface, and the desired outcome before proceeding with the woodburning process.


The “Synaptic Mycelium” guitar is a testament to the possibilities that arise at the intersection of traditional woodworking and modern art.

It reflects the dedication of skilled artisans like those at Sacred Fire Arts, who push the boundaries of their craft to create remarkable pieces that resonate with both form and function.


Check out this video of Michael at work – truly incredible!

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