Well, I have completed page two, or image two or whatever!

I am not completely happy with it, but that is the risk i took by painting it directly into the book rather than sticking in a painting done on other paper. I am wary that i will be sticking in paper for other pages and don’t want it to get so chunky it won’t close, so that was why i took the risk this time. I also used watercolours… which i have not done since i was a teenager and they are a bit tricky sometimes!

So i was inspired by a programme on BBC4 on Katsushika Hokusai that i saw the other night, about his picture The Great Wave off Kanagawa. I have a calendar with this image in it, as i love it and bought it particularly for this image. Here is a photo of it to jog your memory:


A bad photo, but i have no scanner!

And here is my picture i just finished, i have called it Hokusai Gulls:


I thought his picture could do with some bird life!! So i swapped the fishermen for gulls…

The card of the book is not really meant for painting on and evidently has some residue of glue or something in places, which affected the ability of the paint to stick: it works in places, but maybe not in others! But in spite of all this, i feel a sense of acheivement today, it is not bad for a first bold attempt straight into the book. If i am going to fill the book any time soon, i cannot be a perfectionist about it!


I have completed the first “page” of my birdy book.

It is a “murmeration” (the proper name for a group of them) of starlings flying above another who is looking up at them.


The starling is a cut out of a drawing i did, painted with watercolour and stuck on. The mumeration is a home made “rubber stamp” which after much experimentation with chopping at a wine cork, cutting card etc was made by cutting up a wide rubber band and sticking the little birds to the cardboard sleeve of my new putty rubber (with rubber still inside for stability)!


I really enjoyed the process and trying to work out how to do it. It is so good to be absorbed in a task and I found it surprisingly relaxing and not too draining.

The starling looking up reminds me of the people in the concentration camp being “envious of birds” (see previous post) and looking up at them, and also of myself looking up. The connection between those on the ground and those “in flight”, and perhaps a sense of longing to join in.