I took a marquetry class at the Seattle Woodcraft and made this wolf, then took it home and made a frame for it.
Final photo first
My best guess at remembering the wood types:
Frame is maple, with splines of walnut and cherry; background, lower mane, and around the eyes is sapele, snout and ear tufts maple, lips rosewood, upper mane walnut and inner lower mane light walnut, eyes ebony and maple
This is the beginning pattern. It was glued onto (I think) 1/8" thick wood on a backing with a temporary frame, then each piece was individually cut out with a fret saw on a marquetry stand.
Once those pieces were cut out, they were glued to the actual wood (also ~1/8" thick), and cut out again with a fret saw
This is after the final pieces are cut out and the template pieces are ripped off.
Each piece glued to the backing, then sanded up to ~220. We then sprayed on a coat of a quick drying shellac to keep the wood filler (in the next step) from staining the wood.
Smearing on the wood filler, part 1
Smearing on the wood filler, part 2
After the wood filler dried, it was sanded again to around 220 grit
I didn't know about splines until I saw them on the internet recently, but I loved the look, so I used the finished piece as an excuse to experiment with making a frame with splines. (And a spline jig... there are probably a lot more splines in my future.)
Finished it with a few coats of wipe-on poly
Final, finished, up close