Paper Mache Hummingbird - Part 2

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You can see here how the wet bird is weighing down the cut PVC pipe.

Any little bumps are going to be glaringly obvious when you paint something like this, so smooth everything down nicely.

The wings look a bit fat here, but it is too late to do anything about it.
I look like the bird's chiropractor in this photo, smoothing down the paper strips.
Just the tail is left here.
When the paper is totally dry, which takes about an hour when it is 100 degrees outside, paint it with some latex paint Now you will really be able to tell how bumpy you made the thing.  This can be discouraging, but don't let it get you down.

Brain was walking up his back stairs across the alley and shouted down "hey, is that a hummingbird?".  I answered yes, and he continued, "you must be getting pretty good at that, because I can tell what it is already."  I was pretty happy to hear that.

Here the Par laundry detergent has been replaced with a cinder block. I had to wash my nice pants.

I started to paint it.  I use interior latex, using my printouts for color reference.

When painting at home,  get one big glob of paint onto your nice pants before you change into your work clothes.

Painting kind of takes a long time with a brush. I am going to try a roller more from now on. The careful work on the underside of the wing is visible here, making it look like a feathery wing. Ok, maybe not.
I was running out of time before the festival and the flower wasn't done at all, so I tore down some more damn coroplast herbalife signs and cut flower petals out of them. 

Note the paint roller for the petals.

Here is a photo of the paint job, shown a little more complete.  
I had to throw together the flower, and it really ended up looking like crap.

 "Oh well, the deal was for a hummingbird", I kept telling myself.

It took forever to get this guy in my hatchback. The wingspan was a very cumbersome shape that was just a wee bit too big & angled to get in anywhere easy. I ended up moving him in through the passenger door. 

 I loaded up everything I thought I would need for the trip & headed out to Angel's Camp, California, which is about 80 miles south of Sacramento.  I probably shouldn't be taking this kind of photo while I am driving.

At the festival, I finally met Sherry and Gretchen in person, & got the super all-access pass for workers and artists, went inside and set the hummingbird up over the water in a little pond near one of the stages.
I waded into the shallow water and set up the bird with his crappy flower.

Sherry and Gretchen were remarkably calm for the opening day of a huge three-day festival, but I could tell they were too busy to ooh and ahh over the bird. 

Damn, that flower looks lame.  Try to concentrate on the hummingbird.  The tail is sitting about 12 inches above the water.


It ended up looking pretty great!  The festival was nice, although I didn't stay too long. It was a wee bit too earthy for me. but I enjoyed myself for the rest of the day, gorging myself on fruit drinks.

I certainly anticipate that the hummingbird will serve them well for many years to come.

Here is a picture of a couple of kids playing next to it with super soakers.  I resisted the urge to drown those kids before they hurt my hummingbird!

Materials I had to buy for the project included wood, chicken wire, PVC pipe, screws, and paint, around $36 total.

If you need something like this for yourself, send me an email and I will gladly send you advice or a price for me to make it for you.

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Contact Rob July 12, 2001.  

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