ThunderBird

-Don Ballard
Ballard Fine Homes Vancouver Island BC

Don was looking for something epic and sweeping to grace the space over his massive mantle. I had him send me a picture and asked him a few questions. I learned he lived on the ocean and loved to watch the Eagles soaring overhead. They were definitely his Spirit Animal. I immediately sketched the vision I had over the picture he sent. I saw an almost liquid Golden Eagle banking along the mantle and out again to the sea, with a glance back as if an invitation to follow. He loved the concept.

Jennifer is so kind, caring and easy to work with and her level of service is exceptional.

 I experimented with a few materials and chose high density urethane panels. I separated my design into two-inch layer patterns and blew them up to actual size to cut the original base shapes. Then began the messy fun stuff, taking away material with rough and then finer tools to expose and coax ThunderBird out of the material. The effect was reminiscent of sand dunes or gentle waves…abstract with a hint of realism.

After several coats of primer and bondo, the base coats went on and it was ready for me to paint the finishing oil coats of amber, rusts, golds and warm tones to contrast and pop off the wall and stone. An automotive clear-coat protects and adds a sheen. A custom hanger was created to hold ThunderBird…to allow for slight unknown adjustments that may be needed because of the variety of depth of stone or height. After the 3,000-mile trip and seamless installation, ThunderBird will forever fly in perfection!

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