Nine Houses and One Bird

I don’t have all the details worked out, but here is what I have so far:

Cut mat board into 4″ squares. Decorate each background differently — collage or flat mixed media, different colors, paints and textures. Use a technique or two already detailed in this blog. (See under category Backgrounds.) Layer paints, spread gesso and then paint again. If you are using images keep them small, possibly in a pattern covering the square. When backgrounds are completely dry, proceed.

Draw a pattern for a birdhouse for each square. Only rule is the house must fit in the square. Make it a small house, a tall house, a squat house, a two story house, a many windowed house. Maybe add a chimney if you wish. Use each pattern to ‘build’ a house. Decorate the houses however you wish, but make them different from the backgrounds and from each other. Then draw a hole in each house so its’ bird dweller can ‘fly’ in.

Design one rather fancy, unusual bird. Maybe one with a multi-feathered tail, a sharp dinner jacket, a cowboy hat, a summer scarf, multi-colored feathers, a metallic bird. Be as creative as you want, as long as the bird itself is obviously a bird and it shows up well on the background.

Cover a piece of canvas board with a piece of fabric or paint. Glue the 4x4s to the canvas, leaving an inch or so between them. You can use Yes!, a strong white glue, to affix them.

Pick a birdhouse for each square, mixing and matching until the composition is pleasant. Attach the birdhouse to the background.  On the house for THE bird, make a painted perch out of a a small twig or whatever else you have around. Use an awl or Exacto knife to fashion a tiny hole under the entry hole and glue on perch. It doesn’t have to be too long, maybe 1/2″ long. Fasten the pretty bird to its perch.  Affix ribbon or fiber on the strips between the panels or leave them plain.

On the bottom, stamp words. Some suggestions: A House is a Home, Bird Home, One Out of Nine, Dwelling, The Shelter, Feathery Shelter, Flock House, or come up with a different name.

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