Monday, January 21, 2019

A Little Bit Of Lichen....

I'm Liking It....

First of all, Dear Readers, I want to thank you all for your wonderful comments on my Christmas Card! It did take longer than usual to draw, and it was more complex and detailed than previous ones... and I wrestled with the precise perspective for a long time, but in the end I am happy that I finally drew my work room (formerly the Dining Room) in almost all of it's chaotic detail! I have fallen way behind on reading blogs and commenting and even answering your comments on this blog, but I needed to stay focused on the drawing! Now that Almost all the cards have been sent to their destinations, I can finally try to return to the mini making that I love so much. And because I am on a Mission to get the lilac shrubs finished.... they are the highest priority! You might recall that I was planning to add the finished blossoms to the shrub as I completed them, but then decided I really needed to finish the shrub stems completely before I added the delicate blossoms. I had achieved a bark texture that I was happy with, but there was another detail that I wanted to add before the stems could be declared finished.... and that was lichen! I have never known a Lilac shrub that did not have Lichen! In the above picture you can see the stems of my little lilac shrub.... (picture taken the day before the snow arrived) with the delicate lacy gray-green lichen growing on the bark.

Here is another closer view..... it grows even on the younger stems.

Here is some more..... 
it is a very delicate texture and soft color......
And I was having a hard time deciding how to make it in miniature!
I had decided that maybe I would try to paint some sawdust
 and clump it together in little patches....
when my eyes fell onto the package of 
landscaping supplies sent to me by Birgit....
(Thank you again, Birgit!!!)

And I wondered if I painted this material and clumped it together..... 
would it make a lichen-ish impression?

I mixed up a greenish gray color with my acrylic paints....

And smothered bits of the landscaping material in the paint.....

I "painted" it onto the plastic bag
 so it would be removable when dry... 
and let it dry thoroughly.

The I pulled apart little bits of the dried clumps..... 
and attached them to the lilac shrub stems....
Can you see it there?
How about now? Can you see the little clumps?

I have tried to add little bits in likely spots.... 
without overdoing it.....
It is supposed to be a subtle detail!
So far I am Liking how it looks!

And while I have been writing and
 sending out all those Christmas Cards, Dear Readers,
 I have also been sticking to my Blossom-a-week schedule!

Here is Blossom number Forty completed!

And in the Box with the others!
Soon, very soon now, 
I really will begin to attach all those blossoms... 
except I have thought of one or two other little details
 that might have to come first.
But for now, Dear Readers,
 I am adding little bits of Lichen...
And so far I am really Liking it!


  1. Your obviously barking up the right tree Betsy! and I'm Likin' your additional lichen too! :D

  2. Wow, you are fully committed to achieve the perfect and most real 1:12 lilac shrub and I´m loving it! :)

  3. perfectos los troncos, estoy deseando ver la planta completa!

  4. Fantastic result, Betsy, your lichen looks very realistic, it has just the right color and texture! What luck that Birgit has sent you a bag full of the landscape stuff.
    Chapeau, for your number forty lilac blossom, it looks, like all of the others, gorgeous!!!
    Hugs, Ilona

  5. Wow! Your lichen looks wonderful. Perfect for your branches. I might have to steal this idea.

  6. The lichen looks perfect on the lilac shrub stems and now the the plant look very real.

  7. Getting all those cards mailed out is a monumental project itself! What a lovely thing to do for the people you care about, Betsy! I imagine opening your package and seeing the card in person is thrilling!
    How perfect to add lichens to the branches! It looks completely authentic in every aspect! I think even better than real life! This (blooming) lilac shrub (and all other seasons) is going to be ~S~T~U~N~N~I~N~G~!
    Congrats on #40 (not to forget you actually made 41)! The filled box is artfully beautiful in and of itself! Once you have them all made up, before the process of applying them to the branches, you should put them on a leaf colored background and take photos. They'd make beautiful Thank You or Birthday cards to send out! Texturally (yes, it's a word) amazing!
    What? Other details? I can't wait! Have a wonderfully productive week!

  8. The tree branches look perfectly natural. Fantastic work.
    Anyone receiving one of your cards will be gloriously happy.
    Hugs, Drora

  9. El liquen queda perfecto en el tronco y ramas,me gusta el color,ahora que has completado el ramo 40,estoy deseando verlos en el árbol!!

  10. nice tree: I like its texture and the foam that is added!

  11. Hi Betsy, The lichen is perfectly executed. I dashed out to check it on my lilac! I noticed the buds are swelling.
    Regards Janine

  12. Hi, Betsy - I love your idea for creating the lichen, especially your technique of painting the bits onto plastic for easy removal. Ingenious! I feel a little thrill each time I see the branches of the lilac shrub; they're so real that it's uncanny. It's going to be an amazing creation when those blossoms are added. Congratulations on completing #40!

  13. I can only agree - no lilac tree without lichen. Your method is fantastic and I will keep in mind this technique of "painting" the stuff on plastic and peeling up tiny parts. The shrubs were looking awesome already because of the textured and stripped bark you've created but the lichen is just this special additional touch to add realism and make it even more perfect. I only wonder now about the details you still want to add before attaching the blossoms - I already foresee running ants on the bark! *devilish grin* But without any joking, as always I'm looking forward to see more of this - and to meet No. 41 aka 42 of the lilac blossom family. So far welcome to No. 40-41!


  14. Wow wonderful idea with the lichen. Your bush looks so real hard to tell apart. 40 blossoms phew I cant wait to see them on the bush.
    Hugs Maria

  15. Hello Betsy,
    The lichen looks perfect. I really like your technique. You captured it perfectly.
    Big hug

  16. Well, here I am at last. I am speechless! Or wordless. Your attention to detail is just amazing; first the floret (which did arrive safely) and then the lichen. Yikes! I can't believe how realistic those lilac stems are. True artistry.
    Lots of love,
    (looking forward to seeing the completed lilac bush.)

  17. Looking good! That was an inspirational idea to paint/clump the greenery. It looks really authentic and now I'm really keen to see those little lilac stems in place.