Our Coastal Birds

We feel very blessed to live 2-3 minutes walk from the beach and once a week we meet up with one of our good friends to walk along the shoreline, she is a keen photographer and specialises in bird and wildlife photography. We have seen many coastal birds on our walks over the winter months so I thought I would share some of them with you.

The background textures and colours represent the sand, sea and pebbles of our shoreline. First, I applied Sea Green and Desert Spectrum Aqua Markers to an acrylic block, spritzed the ink with water and pressed it onto the page. I then stamped a Sketchy stamp by Kaisercraft using Tea Dye Distress Ink and a Serpentine Background stamp using Cracked Pistachio Distress Ink. Then I repeated the same process by applying Hickory Smoke and Blueprint Sketch Distress Ink to an acrylic block, spritzing it with water and dripping the ink or pressing the block onto the page. I stenciled dots using a Creative Expressions Mask and the Hickory Smoke ink with a blending tool. Next I secondary stamped (in order to give a lighter image) a compass stamp from the Steampunk stamp set by Docrafts, a feather stamp by Craft Sensations  and a binoculars stamp by Royal & Langnickel using Jet Black Archival Ink. This is to represent the North West coastline, the fact that some of the birds migrate to our shores, the feathers you find on the beach and the binoculars we use to see the birds up close. The bird images are fussy cut from an old AA travel book and show some of the different birds we have seen on our walks; they are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic. I also cut the Oyster Catcher image and information from the same book, as well as the blue paper square which I stamped with the names of some other birds that we have seen and also decorated it with a tag stamp using Archival Ink, and the same compass and feather stamps using the Hickory Smoke ink and the Desert Aqua marker. Both these pieces are stuck to the page using double-sided foam tape. I stamped the words “discover” and “explore” using Archival Ink and then I used rub-on transfers for the rest of the wording. To finish I added three pretty white and blue seashell beads using Glossy Accents to adhere them.

As we are “Out and About” exploring the shoreline and watching the birds, I’m pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

Our walks along the beach are made even more magical by the wide variety of birds that we see. Here’s a view from the top of one of the many sand dunes, it shows the area of the beach and mudflats where we see many of the birds, especially when the tide is coming in.

We always have fun spotting the different birds especially those that over-winter here or stop to feed during their migration. Here I am all wrapped up at the foot of the dunes, looking for birds because I am normally allocated chief bird spotter and given the binoculars. We often see what is known as a LBJ (little brown job) which we think is a sparrow but turns out to be a Linnet or a Reed Bunting or even a special visitor to our shores – a Wheatear. My hubby and our friend are the photographers as they have the zoom lenses needed to capture the flying birds and those on the shoreline. As you will see from the following photos they have captured some wonderful birds on our walks. I’d like to say a special thank you to both of them for contributing their fabulous photos to my blog today!

This Turnstone was watching us and waiting to resume feeding on the muddy shoreline, it is well suited to our coast as although we have sandy beaches there are pebbles and stony areas too.

It was amazing to see the Curlews for the first time this year, aren’t they magnificent! I was surprised about how big they are, until my friend told me they are one of the biggest wading birds in Europe. They also have a very distinct call which gives them their name.

The Little Egrets have joined our shoreline over the winter months, they take refuge in the mud flats at low tide and tend to disappear at high tide. They are so elegant and as you can see look spectacular when in flight.

The Oyster Catchers stay along our shoreline all year round and are very noisy birds. They come closer to shore as the tide comes in and here they are on the mud flats at high tide. They are so beautiful with their black and white plumage and red beak and legs.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Sea Green, Desert)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Hickory Smoke, Blueprint Sketch)
  • Ranger Archival (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist Pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Sketchy CS878)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted stamp (Serpentine Background T-2773)
  • Royal & Langnickel Clear Choice Stamps (Journey MIN-CCS104)
  • Papermania Urban Stamps (All Aboard – Tags PMA907178)
  • Craft Sensations Clear Stamps (CRO274/16R1)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essstials A5 clear stamp set (Steampunk DCE907125)
  • Creative Expressions That Touch of Mica Masks (Distressed Dots)
  • Discover Britain AA Book
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Summer #ROY505 Rub-on)
  • The Works (Seashore Beads)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

A Walk in the Park

To celebrate my mum’s birthday this month, she chose to go to Stanley Park where there is an Art Deco Café called “Parks” for a light lunch. We had a lovely time and I wanted to capture our visit as well as my mum’s favourite spring flowers namely daffodils, tulips and iris which I always buy and arrange for her as part of her birthday present.

Firstly I added three strips of plasterboard/drywall tape to the page and applied Blueprint Sketch, Twisted Citron and Hickory Smoke Distress Inks with a blending tool. I wanted the tape to act like a stencil so I removed it revealing a white grid pattern. I stamped a tree stamp by Art Impressions using Rich Cocoa Memento Ink and then I used an A6 Docrafts stamp set to stamp a bigger tree onto my page as well as a piece of brown patterned paper from a Design Pad. I cut out the tree from the paper using the stamp outline to guide me and positioned it over the tree I had stamped on the page using a UHU Stic. On the bottom of the page I added the daffodils, iris and tulips that my mum loves so much, I cut the flower shapes from pieces of napkin which then melted into the page when I used Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to stick them down. Next I added the names of the flowers and the month which are rub-on transfers. The wooden frames are from Poundland and I created different pictures to remind me of our day out together. I filled one with the same napkin flowers, another with the logo of the café we visited which is from a leaflet I collected whilst we were there and the last one with a piece of card that I stamped with a recurring “Happy Birthday” using black Archival Ink. I embellished each one with a strip of green ribbon and a mini gel star sticker and stuck the framed picture to the page using Glossy Accents. To finish I covered the tree with cherry blossom flowers and dotted some fallen petals amongst the spring flowers, these are mini gel stickers and depict the lovely pink blossom we saw whilst we were in the park.

As we were “Out and About” celebrating my mum’s birthday, I’m pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

I thought you may like join in our celebration; this is the view as we walked though Stanley Park which is in Blackpool. Visiting the park brings back many fond memories from my childhood because we use to visit regularly to feed the ducks at the lake, walk the paths to see the different gardens and, possibly my favourite thing in the world when I was young, to jump up and down on the outside trampolines.

This time we went to the Italian Gardens which is situated in the centre of the park and has many flower beds, a large number of benches and a central fountain made from Italian marble which is surround by sea horses.

There are great columns and a number of statues in this garden, this includes a pair beautiful of Medici Lions situated either side of the steps that lead to the café. I used to stand and look at them in awe when I was a child, they are so magnificent!

The “Parks” café overlooks the Italian Gardens and was built in a traditional art deco style. It is an imposing building and a focal point of the park.

The inside of the café is so beautiful; it is such an elegant setting with its original art deco features and palm trees.  The menu of breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea seems a bit pricey to me but the quality of the food is excellent.

We all had the most delicious ham and cheese toastie for lunch and I had a ginger beer whilst my parents both had coffee. As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

These are the flowers I bought for my mum and arranged in a lovely metal jug, she loves the combination of the yellow daffodils, red tulips and blue iris – don’t they look bright and cheery!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Blueprint Sketch, Twisted Citron, Hickory Smoke)
  • Memento Ink (Rick Cocoa)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (P-1398)
  • Docrafts A6 clear stamp set (Build a tree  DCE907130)
  • Crafter’s Companion Vintage Floral Collection Acrylic Stamp (Floral Sentiments VF-ST-FSENT)
  • Napkin from a café
  • Poundland Design Pad (Changing Seasons CRO701/16PL1)
  • Parks Art Deco Café leaflet
  • 151Adhesives Plasterboard & Drywall Tape
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Spring Sentiments #ROY-506 Rub-on)
  • Poundland A Beautiful Life collection (Wooden Frames LCWDN001)
  • Green ribbon
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Gluepen
  • The Range double-sided tape

Happy Daffodils

March is here and the daffodils are in full bloom which heralds the coming of spring. There seems to be an abundance of them around the town this year and these cheery yellow flowers always make me smile. So to welcome the arrival of one of the first plants to light up our gardens I decided to create a display of my own.

I started by stenciling a honeycomb pattern using a Creative Expressions mask and Pébéo modelling paste and left it to dry thoroughly. I used my new set of Spectrum Aqua Markers to create the background, the colours I choose were Kingfisher, Tan and Desert; I applied them to an acrylic block and spritzed them with water and then I pressed the block or dripped the ink onto the page. Using the same Aqua Markers I stamped a daffodil tile design onto the background and splattered the page with fine dots of the diluted Aqua marker pigments and Black Soot Distress Ink. To make the tags, I used a cream glossy tag and applied the same black Distress Ink to the edge and across the whole surface using a baby wipe. Then I stamped the daffodil tile design using the same Aqua markers to decorate the tag background. The daffodil image is from a magazine, I tore it in half, ripped the edges and applied the black Distress Ink to them and I stuck them to the tags using a UHU Stic. The original image design was monotone except for a yellow wasp, so to accentuate the daffodils I coloured the flower, stems, leaves and words using Derwent Inktense pencils, a Moss Spectrum Aqua Marker and a black Derwent Graphik Line Marker. I found the wasp detracted from the daffodils so I covered it up with some vintage butterfly washi tape. I added some black paper twine and stuck them to the page using double-sided foam tape. I also flicked yellow and orange Derwent Inktense pencil ink over the background to connect the daffodil colours from the tag with the rest of the page. Next I added stickers from the Idea-ology Salvage Stickers collection called Crowded Attic by Tim Holtz, which I edged using the same black Distress Ink. To finish I added the words which are rub-on transfers and the shiny yellow and orange mini gel stickers.

As this page is about seeing daffodils when we’re “Out and About” in town, I pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

As part of our volunteer work for St. Anne’s on Sea in Bloom, we were involved in planting daffodils around our local town. It was nice to admire the fruits of our labours when we were out shopping this weekend; we had added a layer of daffodil bulbs in these tubs and it’s so wonderful to see their yellow heads prettily bobbing in the breeze.

Last year in October, we also planted bulbs along one of the main roads into our town.

Now these beautiful daffodils say “hello” to people as they drive into St. Anne’s on the Sea – what a lovely happy greeting!    

As T Stands for Tuesday my drink of choice is hot water today and we are also having American pancakes with blueberries, bananas, whipped cream and Maple Syrup  – yummy yum yum! The maple syrup comes all the way from Dave’s Sugar Shack in Maine, our friends kindly sent it to us as a present. These pancakes are actually the ones we had on Shrove Tuesday, which ties in nicely with the daffodils as they are often called the Lent Lily because they flower when Lent starts and tend to have finished flowering by Easter. I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

Do you know any fun facts about daffodils? Did you know:

  1. The daffodil is the flower for March.
  2. The daffodil is the national flower of Wales.
  3. In the Victorian days, daffodils represented chivalry and today they represent hope.
  4. Daffodils signify the coming of spring.
  5. The daffodil is a common decoration during Chinese New Year.
  6. A gift of daffodils is said to ensure happiness.
  7. Daffodils contain a toxic sap which is harmful to other flowers. Before arranging in a vase with other flowers the daffodils should be soaked in water for 24 hours. Do not re-cut the stems as it will re-release the toxin.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Papermania wood mounted stamp (39454)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Honeycombe)
  • Magazine Spectrum Aqua Markers (Kingfisher, Tan, Desert, Moss)
  • Tim Hotlz Distress Ink (Black Soot)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Derwent Inktense Ink Pencils (Sun Yellow 0200, Tangerine 0300)
  • Poundland (Die Cut Tags 117106)
  • Wilko (Paper Twine 0314169)
  • Hobbycraft Decorative Tape (assorted Black & White 5971481007)
  • Tim Holtz Idea-ology Salvage Stickers (Crowded Attic #TH92898)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Spring Sentiments #ROY-506 Rub-on)
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Music at High Tide

We always have fun when we walk along the South Promenade in Blackpool, and the last couple of times we have been lucky to have been there when the tide has been coming in. This is because we get to listen to the Hide Tide Organ, which is a sculpture that has pipes running through the centre and down to the shoreline, so when the tide comes in it makes the most amazing sounds. You can imagine my joy on hearing it so I had to capture this in my journal.

music-at-high-tide-ajp-new

I mixed blue, green, apricot, yellow and parchment acrylic paints to produce the background colours that represent the sea, sky and golden sand, and then applied them to the page with a baby wipe. I kept the paint strokes angled towards the right of the page so it looked like the tide was moving into the shoreline. Next I added strips of music note washi tape to represent the musical sound the tidal organ makes and merged them into the background using paint. Then I splattered white acrylic paint over the page, I did this by applying the paint to an acrylic block adding a little water and flicking the paint from the block with a paintbrush. This represents sea foam and I concentrated my splatters on the left of the page fading out to the right. The seaweed leaves are fussy cut from paper by Kaisercraft from their Rock Pool Collection, they are stuck to the page using Liquitex matte gel medium. I painted two wave-shaped paper borders blue and then added wavy detail with a white Uniball gel pen; they were easy to stick to the page as they are self-adhesive. To make my tidal organ sculpture I created a rust effect on a piece of card. Firstly, I stippled modelling paste onto the card to give a rough textured foundation and let it dry thoroughly. I then mixed yellow, red and black acrylic paints to produce brown and orange rusty hues, and then I stippled these colours along with black acrylic over the top of the modelling paste trying not to overwork the colours to avoid them blending together; the idea was to create texture and for it to look patchy like rust. Once the paint had dried I used a template which I had drawn to cut out my sculpture, then I coloured the cut edges with a Sanguine Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt marker and I stuck it to the page using a UHU Stic. I stamped the words in an undulating pattern using a Docrafts Alphas Folk alphabet set and black Archival Ink. To finish I added a couple of seagulls, which are cut from white paper and stuck down using a UHU Stic; we often see a seagull perched on the top of the sculpture.

I’m so pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s way who is hosting this month’s challenge “Out and About” over at Art Journal Journey.

high-tide-organ

The High Tide Organ is a sculpture which is 15 metres (49 ft 3 in) tall and is described as a “musical manifestation of the sea”; it is one of a few examples of a tidal organ.

plaque

“The sculpture was designed by the artists Liam Curtin and John Gooding, and was constructed in concrete, steel, zinc and copper sheet. The harnessing of wave energy, and the sculpting of the concrete and metals is said to produce a unique interpretation of Blackpool’s natural and man-made environments. The instrument is played by the sea at high tide through eight pipes which are attached to the sea wall. These are connected under the promenade to 18 organ pipes within the sculpture. The swell of seawater at high tide pushes air up the sea-wall pipes and causes the organ pipes to sound. The best time to hear the High Tide Organ is two to three hours before or after high tide. On very calm days the organ is silent for part of its cycle. The pitches of the pipes are based on the harmonic series in B flat” (Wikipedia). It makes quite an eerie sound, as you can hear for yourself on this link.

rust

Being by the sea, you would expect this metal structure to rust and it has a lovely texture to it as a result.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Swedush Blue, Christmas Green, Ivory Black, Apricot, Cadmium Yellow Medium, Cadmium Red Medium Hue/Lacquer Red)
  • Colvin & Co Artist’s Acrylic (White Titanium)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Sanguine 188 B)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Alpha Folk DCE907115)
  • Kaisercraft Rock Pool Collection paper (Seaweed P834)
  • Hobbycraft Paper Borders (White 5895891000)
  • Hobbycraft Decorative Tape (Assorted Black & White 5971481007)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Cardboard
  • White paper
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic

Snowdrop Season

On Valentine’s Day we went to see the snowdrops at Lytham Hall. It was a beautiful sunny day and we thoroughly enjoyed our leisurely walk through the very impressive displays of snowdrops. I created this page to remember their beauty.

snowdrop-season-ajp

The background is Spectrum Aqua Markers, I scribbled the ink on an acrylic block, and then I spritzed it with water and pressed it or dripped it onto my page. The colours I used portray the yellow sunshine, blue sky, the lush green foliage and the rusty-brown leaves that surrounded the snowdrops. To add texture I splattered the page with black acrylic paint, stamped a homemade grid stamp using black Archival Ink and a small texture stamp using a Moss Aqua marker. I also added a fine outline of swirls using a Swoosh Mica Mask by Creative Expressions, a white Uniball gel pen and the Moss and Olive Aqua markers. As the snowdrops were flowering under the trees, I stamped a tree image using black Archival Ink and then I added more branches to them using a Derwent Graphik marker. The words are rub-on transfers which I thought were poignant to the page; to me the snowdrops seem to “aspire” to display their beauty and be something I could only “dream” of. Lastly they reminded me of a poem by William Wordsworth where he writes about having “faith that every flower enjoys the air it breathes”.

If you are interested in the poem, it’s called “Lines Written in Early Spring”; it was published in 1798 and yet it seems as pertinent today as it did then.

I cut the snowdrop pictures and information from an old magazine and a Lytham Hall Events Guide. They are mounted on silver corrugated card which I edged with a silver metallic pen and stuck to the page using double-sided tape.

outline-sticker-collage

The snowdrops are made from this silver daisy shaped outline sticker; I cut the flower in half to produce snowdrop shapes and secured them to the page. I then outlined the image with a Derwent Graphik marker to give more definition and coloured the petals using white gesso. The leaves, stems and little dot on the petals are coloured green using the Moss Aqua marker. To finish I covered the petals in Ranger Glossy Accents to give them dimension and a lovely glow; I think they look a bit like stained glass.

1-close-up

I thought you might like to join me on our walk to see the beautiful snowdrops. These little clumps of snowdrops greeted us when we entered the grounds of Lytham Hall by the side entrance. You may remember Lytham Hall from my Winter Art Fair post.2-opening-photo

As we turned the corner, the snowdrops literally carpeted the woodland floor, sitting in the dappled shade in all their white splendour!

walled-garden-collage

Then we entered the walled garden, where the flower beds were brimming with snowdrops too.

front-collage

At the front of the house it looked like it had been snowing with the drifts of snowdrops glistening in the sunshine. As my hubby and me both enjoy photography, we were interested in the frames that had been put up around the walk. They indicate where a good shot can be taken and of course you can use them to frame your subject too.

6-woodland-collage

Following the woodland path we stopped to take in more pretty views . The snowdrops look so dainty with their white and green bell-shaped blooms.

3-snowdrops-opening

I hope you enjoyed the walk as much as we did – I was amazed, there were snowdrops everywhere and the displays were stunning!

vanilla-slices

As a special Valentine’s treat and to continue the white theme, we went to our local bakery and bought two of the biggest Vanilla Slices I have ever seen! To give you an idea of their size, that’s a standard tea plate they are sitting on. These are filled with a lemony custard and when we got home we enjoyed them (very much) with a mug of green tea – they were so delicious! As T Stands for Tuesday I’m sharing my treat with the T Gang and wishing you all a very Happy T Day!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic Paint (Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Moss, Lime, Olive, Aquamarine, Terracotta)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Script metallic pen (Silver)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (white)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Swoosh)
  • The Works Clear Stamps (CRO274/TW3)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (P-1398)
  • Homemade wooden block stamp with Plasterboard/Drywall tape
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-On Sentiments (Motivate Sentiments #ROY-510 Rub-on)
  • Magenta Style Outline Stickers (Assorted Peel-off)
  • Poundland (Corrugated Card 173117-GE16)
  • White tissue paper and card
  • Fun Cut Scissors
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Glide double-sided foam tape
  • X-Press It double-sided tape

A life of love and happiness!

I feel very blessed to have married my soulmate and to have spent many happy and fulfilling years together – our life is a simple one based on love and happiness!

life-ajp

I started by painting the page with Aquamarine and Yellow Spectrum Aqua marker ink which I diluted with water. I used a round blending tool to add circles of Peeled Paint and Cracked Pistachio Distress Ink and as this ink can be reactivated I then spritzed them with water so the colours merged into each other, this gave a lovely mottled pigment effect too.  I wanted to experiment so I made a large round stamp from polystyrene and used it to add lovely textured circles using the same Distress Inks; I think this stamp worked really well. Next I stamped the black flowers using stamps from Hampton Arts and Jet Black Archival Ink. To enlarge the bigger stamped flowers I drew stamen like additions using a black Uni Pin that I swirled around each bloom. As I wanted to add more texture and dimension to the page, I used a stencil to apply a mixture of Parchment acrylic paint and Ranger Texture Paste to add cream dots and wavy lines. To finish I added letter and sentiment cardstock stickers and embellished the page with some beautiful fabric birds, hearts and flowers by Little Yellow Bicycle.

liverpool

We like the same things so we can be found exploring new places or visiting old haunts to take in the architecture, history and culture – it was springtime when we visited Liverpool and took a selfie with the Eleanor Rigby statue.

glasson-dock

We are thankful for everyday and always enjoy the time we have together – here we are along the Lancaster Canal on one of our summer hikes, as you may know we like to go walking in the countryside.

ska-face

We find pleasure in the simple things and feel life is about making memories and having fun; here we are in the autumn watching one of our favourite bands at a local pub.

beach-1

We feel very blessed to live by the beach and still enjoy going for a walk even in the winter all bundled up against the cold.

I’m so pleased to be able to join Erica from BioArtGal who is hosting this month’s theme “Tell me a Story” over at Art Journal Journey.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Aquamarine, Yellow)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Peeled Paint, Cracked Pistachio)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Liquitex Artist Color acrylic (Parchment)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Ronda Palazzari 12×12 template (Texturized)
  • Dot Stencil
  • Hampton Art Doodlebug Design Inc. cling mounted rubber stamps (Borders ICO160, Thankful ICO162)
  • Hampton Art Bella Boulevard cling mounted rubber stamps (Sand & Surf ICO226)
  • Homemade polystyrene stamp
  • Little Yellow Bicycle stickers (Fabric Favourites PD-220, Cardstock Fresh Verse  PD-140)

Dance of the Starlings

As the weather was so nice, we decided to go for a walk along the beach promenade in Blackpool to watch the sunset and the winter ritual of starlings roosting, which is called a murmuration. This magical event is captured on today’s journal page.

dance-of-the-starlings-ajp-2

As Spectrum Aqua markers are a water-based ink, I applied some of the ink onto an acrylic block and diluted it with water to paint the sunset background of oranges, gold and grey, gradually building up the layers to intensify the colour.  I drew the birds onto white tissue paper using a black Uni Pin fine line marker in a murmuration pattern and stuck it to the page using a UHU Stic. The pier silhouette and lamp posts are cut from Kanban background paper; I edged them with a black Sharpie permanent marker and used a UHU Stic to stick them to the page. The struts at the bottom of the pier are drawn using a thicker tipped Uni Pin marker.  To finish I added some nylon thread using a Zig Memory Glue Pen and I used Glossy Accents to stick on the little black beads to depict the strings of lights between the lamp posts on the pier.

As this page is telling the story of the dance of the starlings, I’m so very pleased to be able to join Erica who is hosting Art Journal Journey’s January theme “Tell me a Story”.

pier-3

The murmuration of starlings at North Pier was amazing to watch; they were dancing and swooping in unison. Clouds of starlings kept joining the throng and I found myself hypnotised by their splendour.

pier-2

Starlings perform their acrobatic dance just before they roost for the night. It is thought that they roost together for a number of reasons, there is safety in numbers and grouping together helps them to keep warm during the night. Here’s an interesting video if you want to know more (although the video was shot in Rome, not Blackpool!).

sunset

This is the fabulous sunset that we saw; I love the starburst effect my hubby captured on the photo.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Markers (Peach, Spice, Orange, Gold, Yellow, Charcoal)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.5mm)
  • Sharpie Fine Point Permanent Marker (Black)
  • Kanban Mackenzie Background Card (Data Black CRD1756)
  • White tissue paper
  • Nylon thread (Black)
  • Small black beads
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • Zig Memory System 2 Way Glue (The Dual-Action Glue Pen)