Red Kite Sculpture for Local Nature Trail

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I am delighted to have been commissioned to produce a series of sculptures to go on permanent display at a local nature trail. The recently completed Frugaldom owl has proved very popular so I have decided to start the series with a Red Kite in a similar pose to be positioned, like the owl, on a neglected tree stump.

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The site for this particular sculpture is quite high up so the Red Kite will be viewed from below. I started with a fairly simple cross shape to form the framework for the bird. I have put it on a sturdy temporary stand at a suitable height for working while still being able to view it from underneath.

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The Red Kite has a very distinctive tail and each of the wooden strips (or wing feathers) help to strengthen the sculpture. The wings do not have to be a mirror image of one another but it obviously helps to keep them balanced as the sculpture progresses.

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I have not decided exactly how to tackle the head of the bird but have started adding a few gnarled pieces of wood to suggest the shape.

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The sculpture is a little over four feet wide so it is much better if I can work on it outside the studio, even in miserable weather!

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Gradually thickening up the fan tail of the bird. The longer the strips the better as they can extend through the body and add strength to the sculpture.

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The original framework has now been virtually filled in and the main body of the bird is almost complete.

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 After much deliberation, I decided to carve the eyes rather than leave them hollow.

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Just adding the finishing touches, fortunately in much better weather!

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The Red Kite is now complete, apart from a protective coating of varnish, and is temporarily residing in the Ecoarts garden prior to being transported to the nature trail.

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