This is a mural that Carol and I painted for Carol’s sunroom a few years back. We had lots of fun with this. She had just redone the porch into a year round sunroom and wanted a tree mural on one wall.
Carol painted the tree and branches freehand and then we made stencils for the leaves and the birds. It was very fun figuring out where to place the birds.
It’s not hard to make stencils at all especially using paper because paper cuts so easily. I print something I want a stencil for out of the computer about 3 times on 110 lb. cardstock paper. I put the cardstock that I printed out on a piece of glass and cut with the Xacto knife. On the first sheet, I’ll cut out certain shapes that are not near one another. On the second sheet, I’ll cut out other shapes I haven’t cut out yet. Likewise on the third sheet until all of the shapes are cut out. When you paint, you paint everything on one sheet of paper and then line up the second sheet of paper and paint everything on that sheet. I use big fat, flat brushes, use a small amount of paint, then wipe off most of the paint on the brush. With a circular motion, start painting on the outside edge of the stencil and work toward the middle. I like to put less paint in the middle to give a little variation of color.
If you’re wondering if the paper stencils last, yes, they do. They last long enough for a project. The stencils for the birds in the tree were used once and that is ideal because they won’t disintegrate with one use. There is special plastic to use for stencils and they would last a lot longer but for my uses, paper works fine, cardstock paper.
I took a class in theorem painting years ago and once you can cut plastic theorem stencils for an intricate picture, you can certainly cut out simple stencils on paper. I use an Xacto knife to cut the stencils. Here is a video showing how to cut a stencil with a woodburning tool. It certainly looks easier than the way I did it.
In nature you would never see all these birds in one tree at the same time, but I wanted to put all of our favorite birds in here. My sister has a bluebird family that comes every spring so she wanted a bluebird. I love hummingbirds so there is a ruby throated hummingbird in there and lots of other popular birds, too. Hope everyone enjoyed this.
Best wishes, everyone.
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