Surprise Chicken Portraits

Well, this surprise/blog post is either incredibly well timed, or incredibly poorly timed.  I’m not sure which one… fingers crossed.

Let’s backup.  As you all know, Bethany recently built a chicken coop and got her first four chickens.  We’re all waiting with baited breath for the first eggs, are we not?  I wanted to make her a little chicken coop warming gift, and I took my inspiration from a collage Bethany made and even had as her facebook header photo for a short time:

The Ladies of the Yellow Barn Poultry Co.

I thought it would be kinda fun and kinda hilarious to convert those photos to miniature portraits of the lovely lady chickens in oils.  Michael’s sells 4″-square canvases for $3 each, and I had all the other stuff in my craft bin.  I used basically the same process as the Homemade Paint By Number, except instead of a projector I just used tracing paper to transfer the photo outlines to the canvas.  Here is the final product:


Hope you like them, B!  (You should get them in the mail today.)

Now about that timing issue.  Per social media updates, it seems that the chicken Gertrude actually passed on to chicken heaven just yesterday.   The paintings were already in the mail though, so fingers crossed Bethany is happy to get them and doesn’t burst into tears on the spot.  Ugh.

We’ll miss you Gertrude.  I think her painting is on the far left, based on a different photo.  Guess its appropriate that she’s sort of washed out and heavenly.

One final note:  Sorry about Sylvia the black chicken.  Ransom did that one.  (kidding)  I learned that its VERY hard to paint something that’s so black and not make it look like a kindergarten art project.  Someday maybe I’ll redo her one day.  It didn’t help that her photo was also kinda unfortunate looking, because she is younger than the other 3.  Basically, the other three chickens got lovely Senior Portraits, while Sylvia is stuck with an awkward junior high yearbook photo.


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About Mary-Hall

loyal southerner, exceedingly frugal, compulsive DIYer

13 responses to “Surprise Chicken Portraits”

  1. Anonymous says :

    Those are wonderful and I know Bethany will love them!

  2. Anonymous says :

    Momma Daniel thinks that M-H is extremely talented AND thoughtful to paint my grandchickens’ portrait, as well as a very entertaining blogger. What a sweet gift! I’m sure if Bethany bursts into tears, that they will be tears of joy at having such a caring and imaginative friend.

  3. Mary-Hall says :

    Good news – I spoke with Bethany and she was happy. Whew! You know her well, Momma D!

  4. bethanybordeaux says :

    Mary-Hall, these are AWESOME!! Thanks for sending them to me (I literally unwrapped them and texted Mary hall JUST as husband said “whoa…Mary hall posted a blog about the chicken portraits!” They are such a kind gift and a great way to commemorate Gertrude who passed away yesterday…we had to have her put down so she would not suffer from a rapidly growing terminal cancerous tumour in her ear that was pressing on her brain. 😦 I shall display them proudly in my house…and make miniature prints of them for my chicken coop so the girls can enjoy them. Thanks for being so thoughtful!

  5. safia says :

    Who says chickens are not beautiful? Lovely blog. I can empathise with Gertrude’s death – I lost 2 of my 5 young hens to an infection which affected their breathing – it was so sad to see their inert little bodies. Still, the other 3 seem to be thriving and we’re on the lookout for our first eggs now.

    • Mary-Hall says :

      Best wishes with your flock, Safia! All this chicken stuff is so interesting to me and I am plotting for my own coop one of these days!

    • bethanybordeaux says :

      Thanks Safia! Yes, it’s so so sad to loose feathered friends. I’m sorry that your flock suffered such a big loss! I pray that the other 3 keep kicking for a long time and that you get some eggs soon! I’m working on a post about integrating a new hen into an existing flock, so check back for that if you are ever interested in adding some new girls. Best of luck on your chicken-keeping endeavors!


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