The Somerset levels and moors have been such a source of inspiration lately, not only have Egrets arrived for the first time this year (see last post) but last year saw the re-introduction of cranes to the area. Cranes were thought to have become extinct in the UK 400 years ago although they still visited from time to time. Then in 1979 three cranes migrated to Norfolk and started to breed.
In 2010 the Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Centre in Gloucestershire introduced The Great Crane Project and there they began to hand rear the cranes with the aim of introducing them to the Somerset levels, a perfect habitat for them.
I sat watching a large heron on my journey home from the gallery last week, but haven’t spotted a crane yet!
As you know from my post about my legless Crane my first attempt to make a crane was somewhat unsuccessful so I decided to make some smaller cranes, not life size like the first.
I thought about origami cranes which reminded me of my oldest son who is a mean paper folder! Our house used to be filled with paper models; cranes, flapping birds,frogs, stars, roses and boxes of all colours and sizes. When he was at school he was diagnosed with ADHD and he would sit in class folding bits of paper. Some of the teachers would confiscate it which led to my son becoming very agitated and unsettled. The more savvy teachers let him carry on because they knew he was listening to everything they said, (he could repeat their words exactly) and folding paper helped him to concentrate. Dan left home 2 years ago so he wasn’t around to help me make a crane, so I resorted to a video on the internet. Me being me, I didn’t start with paper I started with wire mesh!
It was quite difficult to fold it!
After adding fibreglass mesh to the structure I covered the first one in crane coloured glass.
The second was a bit smaller and I covered it in gold mirror and my hand -made gold leaf gilded glass . The gold is distressed so shows the copper red paint through the glass.
The third was smaller still and I covered it in my hand-made copper leaf gilded glass.
Then I made a paper crane!
The Japanese believe it is good luck to make 1,000 origami cranes.
Well, I only have 996 more to go!!
My cranes are part of “Flight of the The Cranes” exhibition For Somerset Art Weeks (15th – 30th September) at Somerset Crafts Centre,Avalon Marshes, Westhay, Glastonbury. (Venue 27)
Artist Lucy Lean has an art installation of lots of paper cranes (it must be 1,000) in the gallery. You can see pictures here