acrylic gunk bird

Y’know the gunk that builds up round the top of acylic paint bottles?

Y’know when the paint is copper color and it’s just so shiny and gorgeous that although it’s also dried up paint something inside you says No! Don’t throw that away! It’s pretty – stick it in the book!

Y’know when this happens on a day you’ve already started with a page covered in hairy paper that does have a certain feathery like quality?

Y’know when you look at the dried up copper color acrylic paint gunk that you stuck to the page and it looks back at you, demanding: OK, I just have an eye and a beak. You must make me a body with a tail and wings. Immediately!

Y’know? Y’know that feeling?


I knew you would…


That’s how this happened.


Where some people see scrap, I often see ingredients.

Only when it really doesn’t fit with social expectations can I curb my collecting, but I will usually come home with something I didn’t leave the house with earlier in the day.

Leaves, paper scraps, foil and cellophane from sweets, sketches and photos of interesting shapes, patterns and textures; jotted words and phrases from the radio, books, internet or my own head. Findings!

Today I resisted the feathers I saw scattered on the verge as I walked to work. Thinking roadkill, bird-flu, infection, dirt. I saw more feathers, one was 7-8 inches long with a fluffy plumed edge and speckly pattern. Conscious of passing driver’s impression of a grown adult picking up and stashing litter from the roadside. More feathers, smaller but irresistibly velvety. Their owner must have come to an unfortunate end to lose so many clothes. Pheasant? (no corpse), idk.

Thinking aside, when I got to work there was, in my bag, a perfect, elegant, inspirational, new-to-me ingredient.

It wasn’t until I photographed it I discovered it’s a feather and a half!

It might be a subject to draw, a shape to photograph, to inspire. It might act as a brush, then retire to join one of many collages. When the time comes, it will be an ingredient in at least one something I make.

It also looks (to me) like a tiny porcupine with no face.

%d bloggers like this: