When my son and daughter-in-law announced that they had found a home in the country, I began to think of a unique housewarming  gift that I might offer them.

Coincidentally, my youngest son is heavily into recycling and had lots of old weathered grey wood planks used for fencing on his farm. As I looked at the reclaimed wood, I wondered if I could paint on them.  I had found a new challenge!

I carefully selected six planks that did not have too many deep cracks and brought them home.  My son tried to convince me that the deep cracks would not be a problem as they would make the art more rustic. Still, I wanted to play it safe, at least initially.

The idea I had was to paint a protectress for the new home.  I sketched my idea on paper and was fairly true to the original drawing I had in mind.  She is shown holding the actual home they bought (collage), and at the bottom of her dress, I have mountains and valleys to represent their rural area, and trees, also collaged.

reclaimed wood housewarming gift - acrylic and collage

Reclaimed wood art.  Acrylic ink and collage.

I had another helper, my granddaughter, base coat the wood before I added the details. I found out that I liked working on a rough surface.

Surprises emerged as I continued to paint.  For example, there is a tiny knot in the shape of a heart that I noticed on her chest. (If you look closely, you can see it in the above photo).  I decided to leave it hidden but it is visible when the light hits that area in a certain way.  I wonder if others will notice it.

reclaimed wood with painted protectress

Here is the finished version with twine and a dried reed heart.  I added little roses to the heart.

Since completing this reclaimed wood project, I have gone on to paint others and I am looking for more wood to keep me busy over  (dare I say the word?) winter.

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