Sunday, August 9, 2015

Decorating A Star Birdhouse

Star Birdhouse - new beginnings
Have you ever purchased something and when you started to work on it didn't know why? I did, this star shaped birdhouse. It didn't fit in any of the parameters that I was used too. Yet the price was, well, just too great to pass up! In fact I don't buy items that are too unusual if they are nearly impossible to decorate.  So much for that theory. My first attempt was going art deco. It was a disaster.

Decorating a mini birdhouse I decided I should do more than just paint the roof, it deserved decorations too. I wrapped the top with vines and then used a kind of lattice to cover it. With the bouquet of flowers below it made for a fetching design even if on a small scale. In fact the small scale was what made it so hard to do in the first place. It was a nice effect and I wanted to use it on a larger surface.

As you can see, it works on a bigger scale but takes forever to do. I spent 5 hours painting it in the vines, leaves and buds after over an hour penciling it in. Goodness, who would have ever thought! I used DecoArt's Black Green then went over the entire structure adding DecoArts Olive Green veins for another hour.

The front and back had a kind of quasi Rosemaling (Krugmaling really) design that I created from a variety of styles that I hoped to again put under a vine and trellis roof. It is never easy let me tell you. Do you ever get sucked into a design and wonder why you continue? I could have stopped so many times but just couldn't.
Star Birdhouse - finished
After the vines and buds were in place I worked first on the front putting in a variety of design elements that were repeated on the back. There is even a black circle mimicking the birdhouse entrance.

After this was done, front and back, I then worked on the trellis for the roof. I didn't want to wrap the entire birdhouse this way, only the roof just like what you'd see in an arbor.

End View of Star Birdhouse - roof and sides
Even when I used a small straight strip to follow when painting the trellis pieces, I discovered that something was missing. Using a black Sharpie pen I followed the trellis outlining each raw umber strip on its edge. Then I followed that up with shadows and finally achieved the depth and dimension I wanted and needed. I guess you just have to keep experimenting until, well, you get it right. Limiting it to just the "roof" was a wise decision. Too much of a good thing is just that, too much! 

I had just one more thing to do, tint the entire raw wood birdhouse using color to bring together all the really separate elements. I felt that tinting the entire birdhouse a pale blue-green then antiquing would achieve a unified harmony. The judgement is yours of course but finally I believe I did get more or less what I envisioned.

Like so many creative projects, the experience of creating anything is a new and total experience. No two items are ever the same, even if you, like I did for awhile, decorate three items at a time. Because it is all hand done, each piece develops a unique persona of its own. In that, I speak from experience.

As I always say, never be afraid to try something new, try to mix it up, use new colors or shapes. You might just end up with a masterpiece!

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope that you will sample some of the others articles as well. You will find that I cover a whole range of topics - all with design in mind!

No comments:

Post a Comment