Okay, so on a scale of one to cool, how cool is this?
A little time ago, I painted an image of an American garden bird. This cardinal was used on my blog as a starting point for a fancy dress costume, which you can see here. Little did I realise that a certain Jerome Travis would be looking for just such a picture.
Jerome is a hiphop artist from Kansas working on his solo album ‘The Cardinal Rule’; when, after trawling the internet for the perfect cover image, he happens upon my picture he set out to get in contact with the artist, yours truly. It’s really great to see my image used in a context that I hadn’t originally planned for it, for the meaning of a piece continues by others’ interpretation of it. Jerome told me he believes in his music as an art form so using a painted image seemed representative of his musical and artistic values. Below is the final cover image.
I went to a burlesque/cabaret show the other night and the dress code was along the lines of ‘the birds and the bees’; a theme representative of the imminent arrival of Valentine’s Day. Having already once dressed as this American garden bird I thought it may be useful to reuse some of the things I had for that. For those of you not familiar with Cardinals, they look like this:
It turned out that the only item I reused was the mask – shown here:
I cut out a mask shape from thin stiff card (whilst also cutting out the eye-holes), papier mache’d a beak and painted it red. I bought some red and black feathers from a local craft store, cut them to size and glued them on. The stick, randomly enough, came from a firework.
I had red trousers and a red top that I planned to wear but if I wasn’t holding the mask I thought ‘the look’ wouldn’t be complete. So I set about making some wings, the finished product you can see below…
I cut out a large cardboard shape and spray painted the whole thing red. I cut out a stencil to indicate feathers and spray painted those bits black. Some of the writing on the cardboard still showed through the spray paint so I made some feathers out of paper. A close up can be seen here…
I stuck on the feathers with a small piece of double sided tape at the tip so that the feather would be free to lift a little from the cardboard. I then pierced holes in the central back piece to thread through some red shoelaces. I got a friend to tie them round each arm so they would be the right length for slipping on and off. When the wings are folded over, you can see how the laces are tied.
Thus, with the wings finished, I added a black feather boa around my neck, gave myself the biggest quiff imaginable to match that of a cardinal’s crest and my cardinal look was complete!