December 11, 2010

"Bird Man"

A few years ago, one autumn day my son, Bryce, and I were walking by a gallery and in the window hung a sculpture that caught his eye. It was half-man, half-bird and had beautiful feathers and a long golden beak. Bryce immediately fell in love with it, but the price tag was more than his budget could afford.

I thought I could create something similar that might please him, so as the holiday approached I gathered Fimo polymer clay, gold paint, some beautiful feathers, and wire for the armature.

We couldn't have it hang, given the restrictions of Bryce's living situation, so our bird-man does not appear to be in flight as the one we saw in the gallery. Also, ours is holding a golden flower (spraypainted silk daisy).

I used a wire doll stand to help him stand and then thought of how to protect him from the rough-and-tumble life of living in close quarters as my son does.

So, before he returned to his home, we took a clear plastic container, set it on its end and glued the doll stand base to the inside (on one of the ends), creating a protective display for Bird-Man. It has stood, thus, in perfect shape in Bryce's room for the last three years. Unlike most things, which he has a tendency to improve upon and embellish with glitter, marker, and collage, Bird-Man has not been altered at all, so I guess he does like it just fine!

Homemade gifts are the best, don't you think? Each year I try to make at least one homemade gift for a loved one. I'll never forget the happy look on Bryce's face when he opened his present. And the joy of being able to give him something he really wanted.

Happy Homemade Holiday!


Jessica Bell said...

This is fantastic, Janice! I love homemade gifts too. If only I had the time to invest in it nowadays! I hope you're having a wonderful time off. And guess what? It's snowing here in Athens, Greece. Not common at all! :o)

Shannon said...

I love homemade gifts - they're the best!

We used to have a place that was similar to "color me mine" up the street. I loved going in there and creating gifts for family and friends! Since I'm limited on time this year, I've resorted to creating gift baskets. =)

Melissa Kline said...

Love the Bird Man and the story behind him. So creative and such a heartfelt gift. Homemade gifts are so special - they express love without words. I always find something to make / create for every holiday. Your post is very inspiring. Thanks for sharing!

February Grace said...

That is so cool! I love homemade gifts. People don't often realize how much more time it takes to make say, a crocheted blanket or a painting or a sculpture like you made for Bryce. (I just bought some Sculpy for a project I'm dying to try but I don't know what to do with it!) The fact that he didn't change a thing on it shows that he absolutely loves it, and when someone really does 'get' a handmade gift, it makes a memory for them and for you.

Thinking about your post, I just realized, I don't have a single handmade gift from my mother. I only learned a few years ago that she knows how to knit and crochet, but she never does anything creative.

I treasure the few things I have left that my grandmother sewed for me when I was a child one dress is so small I can't believe I ever wore it. That love comes through. That love is forever.

Bryce is so very blessed to have a mom like you.


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