Designs are chalked out on a flattened steel oil drum and then cut out by hand with a mallet and chisel. Unpainted pieces are made to be used inside or outside. Outside they will eventually begin to turn a beautiful patina. Should you prefer the original finish, you can spray it with a clear gloss varnish every 18-24 months. We recommend Krylon Crystal Clear spray - it will also remove scratches. This can be found in any art store or hardware store.