Lucy Dean, an ex colleague, and very good friend of mine, decided to put on a Bird Extravaganza in her garden last weekend. We were welcomed by the site of these amazing rainbow coloured birds dancing around her rotary drier, and gently swaying in the breeze. Lucy had created them by twisting willow into bird shapes, and then covering the frames with coloured tissue.
As we wandered through her and her husband Graham's lovely garden, there were lots of bird related works of art to discover, from the large printed sheet you see above, where the crows are soaring on a cloud of white cotton, to the amazing milk bottle Gulls below, being cleverly reflected in the round mirrors, where the Gulls could be seen against the reflected sky!
One of Lucy's many specialities are crows, and they were perched on fences, and trees, scarily peering at us from above. The old crow in the photo below, even has his specs perched on the end of his beak, (to see us more clearly no doubt)!!
Again, I think Lucy bends and manipulates willow into the desired shapes, which she has then covered with black plastic. The crow head below is a work in progress, and so far has blue strips of plastic tied around the frame. I will make sure that I give a progress report for this one, as I believe it is also going to be part of a future exhibition.
The ceramic tiles above were also designed and painted by Lucy, forming a very colourful peacock. I'm not sure about the parrot below, but I took his photo anyway, as I thought he was rather gorgeous.
Below is a rather wonderful fantasy mask, with two bluetits facing each other just above the eyes.
Now this Birdfest was also a collaboration of bird related arts and crafts by members of Lucy's family, and some of her friends. Graham, her hubby, is a talented potter and ceramicist, and he decided to craft the two birds below. They are still to be fired and glazed, but looked great just as they were in the photos below.
Above is bunting that Lucy made from painted felt, and below a glorious pink flamingo made by her niece Emily Webber. I love that his/her body was made from an old discarded light shade!
Karen Moser printed the black and white birds above and below from a lino cut, and then stitched them onto some hand dyed fabric, giving the background a lovely impression of a summer garden. She also made the nest below, filling it with some small eggs lying on a bed of soft feathers.
Jackie Harford constructed the bird boxes, decorating them in some delightfully witty ways. The box above had a peep hole, lovely to peer into, especially after dark when the light underneath shone into it. Below is 'Birdsong', and below that the words to one of Paul McCartney's songs has been written on the front.
The box below has another world inside, filled with a whole family of birds.
My contribution was the hand stitched bird bunting below. I'm having work done on my house at the moment, so can't get to my sewing machine! Anyway, it has been fun to sit of an evening and use scraps to create the fantasy birds below, decorating them with plenty of hand stitching.
I was unable to stay until darkness fell, but Lucy had arranged for plenty of candles to be lit, and placed strategically, giving a magical twist to her exhibition of bird art. I hope you have enjoyed seeing these photos, and I hope that wherever you are in the world, you are enjoying some creative time too.