welcome, and thank you for joining me on my farm and studio in southern lancaster county, pennsylvania

Monday, October 27, 2008

checker birds

Bluebirds vs. Blackbirds

I've sort of been amusing myself by making gameboards. There are several underway in various stages of completion, but the most recently finished one is shown here. The gameboard is slightly oversized in order to accommodate the birds as the checker playing pieces. It is designed so that when a bird is "kinged" a braided wire ring is placed around its neck. 

Each bird was carved from tulip poplar wood, then sanded smooth, followed by many coats of paint and glazes. Finally, legs were added, beaks and eyes were painted, and they were attached to their bases. The gameboard itself went through a similar series of stages, ending with a hand-rubbed wax finish to give it an especially soft and smooth feel.

1 comment:

ALS said...


I am a friend of Sharon Gilligan's and discovered your blog and art through a link on her blog. I love your work. You bring to folk art a refinement and subtlety that you don't often see. Your bluebird/blackbirds game board is so enchanting, I want to play. I particularly like the redwing blackbirds, which I look for every spring. Beautiful, beautiful work.