“…Proverbial wisdom counsels against risk and change. But sitting ducks fare worst of all…”
— Mason Cooley
PS I really wanted to use this photo for something… Every year we have a pair of ducks having a pit stop in a very tall tree outside my work. They don’t nest or stay there – it seems to be a rest point and a chance to survey their environment. They only stay for a couple of hours and then they’re gone, until the following year. But it always make me smile to see this enormous tree with two ducks, perched up high and quacking loudly 🙂
Having had a bit of a creative slump lately, I was moping around at home trying to figure out something I could do to get me back on track. I didn’t want to make a card (odd, for me, because I always like making cards) and my attempts at making a Kelly Rae Roberts-inspired collage were all dismal and uninspiring. So, what to do?
I have a box of “bits” that I hold on to for upcycling/altering or using in other projects. It’s got tins and wooden blocks, boxes, decorations and papier mache forms. Basically, it’s a box of crap that I have collected. It’s a hoarder’s dream, but it does come in handy when I am stuck for inspiration and want to do something different.
So, with that in mind, I rummaged around and found these weird Christmas decorations. I bought them years ago in a post-Xmas sale, so they only cost me 25c each or something (the original price was $9.99 – ridiculous!). I thought they would be good for altering, stamping on, painting etc. I liked the shape and the fact they had a good solid base, as well as being able to hang them from something.
I had been playing around with them for a bit when I decided to make a tree out of one of them. Don’t ask me why. I like trees, I guess, but I had never really had an urgent desire to make a little mini-tree of my own. This one came together reasonably quickly, once I got into it. I covered the body/trunk in dictionary text and sealed it with gel medium mixed with a little black and brown paint. I raided some sticks from the neighbour’s tree and made wee little branches with them, stuck into the holes in the wooden shape.
During a crafty session with my nephews and nieces, I made some teeny-weeny mushrooms and a little bird out of polymer clay. After baking them and letting them cool, I painted them (with a lot of squinting) with acrylic paints.
I then crafted a little bird’s nest from twine, which was oddly therapeutic. Just twisting and fraying the twine and making it a roughly bird-nesty shape. I really do like making tiny things. I don’t know why, but they are very satisfying and appealing, from a creative point of view. I really do need to wear my glasses when doing this stuff though!
Eventually, it was all put together (very carefully – it’s not the most robust of creations!), sitting on a base of sphagnum moss glued to a wooden lid, and I’m pretty happy with it. It’s just for me. No purpose behind it (not a gift or something to sell) – it’s just purely for me. I added the “Benedictus” text (from an old large print dictionary) because, very roughly translated, it means “Blessed Be” which kinda resonates with me for various reasons. I wanting to make some more things like this now. I’m feeling the mixed-media vibe right now! I’d like to try some tea-bag art next…will keep you posted!
Nature in Autumn is such a show off. It’s like it brings out its showiest frocks before it has to hunker down in sensible, warm attire. I’ve never noticed before how pretty my street is in Autumn. Where have I been?! Such beautiful colours! Typical of me to notice it just as it is about to turn into Winter (ugh!) but I suppose it is better late than never.
Hope you are somewhere beautiful in your little corner of the world today x