Pretty Bird: A Three-Dimensional Mixed-Media Art Project

Editor’s Note: Today we welcome mixed-media artist Cat Kerr, whose work has been featured in Cloth Paper Scissors: Gifts (2011; download here). In this guest blog post, Cat shares a step-by-step lesson on making a three-dimensional art project featuring a pretty bird. Enjoy! ~Cherie

On Perseverance

by Cat Kerr ( art project | Cat Kerr,

I believe in moving in the direction of your dreams. I believe in vocalizing them, to yourself and to those who are willing to listen. I believe that slowly moving forward is still moving forward. It’s something I have to remind myself of constantly. I believe that not every dream is going to come true, and yet every failure is an opportunity for growth. I’ve realized, at last, that the act of going after it, the act of taking action and moving in the direction of your dream can often times teach you in unexpected ways. Even if your dream isn’t realized, the lessons are far more valuable and they can often lead to new ventures and new relationships. I believe in the perseverance of possibility. In hatching your dreams, putting on your armor, getting to work, then seeing what comes of it.

Step-by-Step Three-Dimensional Art Project: A Pretty Mixed-Media Bird

• Relics and Artifacts Finch Bird
• Dresden Trim (Star Chain & Falcon Crest)
• 1” Chunky ATC Block
• Iced Enamels (Chartreuse)
• Iced Enamels Medium Adhesive
• Unfinished Wood small Box Feet
• Heat Gun
• Deco Art Multi Media Paints (Chartreuse,Magenta)
• Deco Arts Raw Umber Antique Cream
• Gold Rush Metallic Lustre
• Assorted Blackened Gauge Steel Wire
• Deco Arts Media Gesso
• Card Stock and Sticker are from Vintage Emporium 12 x 12 Collection Kit
• Distress Stain Ink Pad
• Assorted Fabric Scraps
• Assorted Bead/Flower findings and book text
• Tacky Glue
• Coconut Fibers
• Flat Rhinestones
• Micro Beads

1. Apply Iced Enamels Media adhesive to the finch and cover in Iced Enamel. Melt with a heat gun.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 2

2. Paint the tail with Chartreuse Media Paint

3. Cover the entire bird in Antique Cream and the using a paper towel remove most of the cream.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 4

4. Add Gold Metallic Lustre to a small spray bottle and add water and shake vigorously. Then spray the bird with the gold liquid.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 5

5. Assemble and cover the Wood Block with Card stock. Ink the edges with Distress Ink

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 6

6. Using left over wire scraps or new wire create a nest for the finch.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 7

7. Glue the nest to the wood Block. Then glue book strips to the inside of the nest. Glue a layer of Coconut Fibers and then another layer of book text.

8. Add the perseverance sticker to the front of the block. To highlight the sticker, using a dry brush add Gesso to the outside of the sticker.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 9

9. Add scraps of Crochet/Fabric Trim to the nest and then Glue the finch in place. Add two Falcon Crest pieces of Dresden to the back of the Finch. Embellish with Flat rhinestones.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 10

10. Fill the nest with assorted bead scraps,buttons,micro beads. Embellish the outside of the nest with a floral/bead twig. I created a scroll out of book text with the word Dream facing the front and glued it into place.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 11

11. Paint the feet the same way I painted the finch tail and glue them in place.

12. Add Star Dresden to the corners of the block.

Three-dimensional art project | Cat Kerr,
Step 13

13. Final touches include the eyes of the finch and adding color to the beak with Magenta Paint.


3D Art and Assemblage, Blog, Mixed-Media Techniques

3 thoughts on “Pretty Bird: A Three-Dimensional Mixed-Media Art Project

  1. I don’t find this the least bit attractive or appealing. I hope this magazine starts sharing more fine art techniques (like watercolor which actually takes a bit of skill) or I will not be renewing my subscription.
    Everything under the kitchen sink is NOT always art.

    1. Hello there! Thanks for sharing your point of view. Please note that this was an exclusively online guest blog post (not a magazine excerpt), and while we will continue to share painting techniques, for example, we do appreciate a variety forms of artistic creativity, including this project, which has received positive reader responses as well. Wishing you the best, ~Cherie

  2. I think Danceswithmoths has kind of missed the point – Cloth, Paper, Scissors embraces a broad spectrum of creative activities and ideas presenting the ideas and skills of many different artists and techniques. I am quite an old lady now, brought up when art had to be traditional and sewing – which is my main interest – had to have perfect stitching and smooth neat edges. I was told in my school days that a monkey with a brush and pot of paint could do better than me and the sewing class would be an appropriate time for my music lesson. Odd that I ended up in later life earning a reasonable living making and decorating ceramics and now, in retirement, I spend many happy hours working with a broad range of textiles, papers, wire and paint – raw edges, crazy stitching – anything that takes my fancy mainly 3D.. There is room for us all in the creative world and I personally embrace, and am thankful for, publications like CPS for introducing new ideas and techniques encouraging people like me who are less confident in their abilities.


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