Thursday, July 27, 2017

At the Bleubeard County Fair

This is the time of year when county and state fairs are the rage, at least that's true in the U.S..  In other countries, they are sometimes known as agricultural fairs.  People flock to them from far and wide.  If you aren't sure what the difference is, if you have an exhibit or competition of some kind you wish to enter, the county where you reside is where you compete or have it judged.  If it wins the grand prize in that category, which usually consists of a ribbon only, you are allowed to enter it in that same category at the state fair.

Now I've never made a secret of the fact that Bleubeard was born in a barn.  He was given to me as a Christmas present by my goddaughter.  His mother, a calico, didn't sandbox train him, so it was left to me, his caregiver, to do so.  So far, this is a true story.

This is the point where the story becomes a tall tail or tale, whichever you prefer.  Today we're headed to the Bleubeard County Fair.  Of course, I had NO idea he was so popular in the county in which he was born.

It seems they have named a county for him and he is the guest of honor at the Bleubeard County Fair. 

We didn't need tickets because Bleubeard was the guest of honor.  Since I accompanied him, the first place we visited was the area where they kept his animal friends.   After all, the agricultural portion of these fairs is often more popular than the rides.  However, there was lots to see, so Bleubeard wanted to make the rounds after saying hello to a few of the animal participants.

We entered the midway where we found the amusement rides.  This one looked harmless, so we took our chances.  Bleubeard wanted to go twice.  For me it was a bit scary, because I'm afraid of heights.

We stopped at one of the tents where we met Madame Magnolia.  She told Bleubeard's fortune.  Of course, we all know what it is, don't we?

Further down the midway was the carousel.  Bleubeard indulged me, because I wanted to ride the carousel horse.

Next it was off to the big top, where a virtual 3-ring circus was under way.  Bleubeard was delighted to see there were no performing elephants or caged lions, only people entertaining today. 

When the performers learned Bleubeard had arrived, the ringmaster insisted he join them center ring for a round of applause. 

One more look back and Bleubeard was off to reign king of the county fair.

He judged the car show, the tractors and other farm equipment, some of which I couldn't even pronounce, the quilts, the jams, and the cakes.  He judged the sheep and chickens.  He ate cotton candy, which got in his fur, and he had a waffle cone filled with a frozen ice treat.  He was given a box of taffy and was invited to pull taffy they were making, but he declined, since he was still trying to get cotton candy out of his fur.  By the end of the day, he was one tired, but finally clean, cat.  But he had an absolutely wonderful time at the Bleubeard County Fair.  I hope you did, too!

I created the background using a combination of inks, handmade shimmering mists, and acrylic paints.  I also used a background stamp to fill in some of the empty spots.  For the various children's colorings I found on the internet, I used a new product I found rather by accident in my stash.

I had never used, or even considered using, these watercolor pencils I got from my friend who was throwing things away from his storage shed. 

In fact, I had to sharpen each one because none had ever been used or sharpened before.  I learned a lot when I worked with these.  I needed to use a teeny, tiny brush, rather than the big fat one I'm used to using.  But, since the children's coloring images were so childlike, I decided any messes I created when trying to use water with these only added to the idea this was a cat's tale, not mine.  Madam Magnolia was cut from a gifted Collage Cats sheet.

Because Moo-Mania and More's theme is Cats, Bleubeard would be honored to join the challenge.

And since Bleubeard and I are hosting Art Journal Journey this month, we both want to thank you for joining us at the Bleubeard County Fair.

Of course, we also hope to see you at Art Journal Journey with your favorite post that is loaded with summertime love.  There's still a few days left to play.

25 thoughtful remarks:

Valerie-Jael said...

Oh what a lovely and fun page today, gave me a big smile here early in the morning! We have lots of fairs here, too, at this time of year, but never saw one in honour of Bleubeard, so this is really special. You were brave going on some of the rides, they all scare me! Glad you liked my bargain threads, it's an unbelievable price here, too, and made me very happy! Have a great day, hugs, Valerie

chrissie said...

I just love a page with a story--real or not. Nice to know Bluebeard did his duties so beautifully and that his county fayre was a great success.

Your page is fantastic and your idea of the Fair just right for me.

Love Chrissie xx

froebelsternchen Susi said...

Oh Elizabeth - what a pleasure today - Bleubeard's special page and made not just only for AJJ but for Moo Mania & More as well!

Love your lovely story behind the page -
♥♥♥ so nice!

I would love to visit Bleubeard County fair!

Thank you for all your wonderful support of AJJ and MM&M!
You are simply the best!

Let's Art Journal said...

Wow, what a busy and fun day Bleubeard had at the fair and I hope he managed to get that cotton candy (another word for my list as we call it candy floss - grin!) out of his fur 😀. He looks so smart in his bow and I love all the images you added, the carousel with the sea horses is lovely! Enjoy your week! J 😊

Let's Art Journal said...

Thanks for your lovely comments on my blog 😀. Yes they did play steel drums, it was magical and I always enjoy this music, it is so uplifting! They performed a variety of songs including island music, Disney songs and even Michael Jackson 😁. The weather was perfect too and I hope it gets a little cooler in your part of the world, enjoy your week! J 😊

My name is Erika. said...

I didn't know Bleubeard was such a fair famous cat. Ha-ha! This is a great page and a nice tribute to fair season. I like all your fun images.
I did hear this morning on the news about the fair death in Ohio. Its really a sad thing and a black mark on fairs. They are a great American tradition. :) Happy Thursday-Hugs-Erika

Blogoratti said...

A lovely and delightful page, the details and thoughts behind it all is great. Thanks for sharing and greetings!

Rosie said...

A really wonderful page, Elisabeth

Thank you for joining us at MOO MANIA & MORE

Nancy said...

Who better as the guest of honor at the country fair? And clearly he took his duties seriously. A full day and a fine time!

CJ Kennedy said...

Such a fun fair. You captured all the sights and excitement of a fair. I used to love rides like rollercoasters and ferris wheels. I thought the ferris wheel was a nice, easy ride like the carousel until as an adult I rode the ferris wheel. Stopped at the top was terrifying.I'll stick to the crafts and craft demonstrations as well as the fair food. Love me fried dough.

I love watercolor pencils. I like the control they offer.

You and the kitties have a wonderful day.

Sandra Cox said...

Oh, I love Bleubeard's Fair!
Have you thought about converting this into a children's book or coloring book?

Cindy McMath said...

This is great fun Elizabeth. I love the page and again you have created a great back story for us! You have a great imagination. I would like to get my fortune tole by Madam Magnolia. I love her name, but also think that's a fantastic image. I bet I have one somewhere if it came from Collage Cats - such a long time ago! I think your coloring is just fine for this whimsical page. But if you want to play around with those pencils some more maybe try them on watercolour paper. And you can also use them in conjunction with the watercolour crayons. I can't believe you are making a page every day for one theme for a whole month (and keeping up with ICAD to boot)! Each page has been so original and unique. Well done!

Dortesjs said...

tail, lol lol great this ;O))

kathyinozarks said...

I totally loved these pages!!

Divers and Sundry said...

Inspired! I got such a kick out of Bleubeard's fair, being a long-time fan of fairs in general. The colors, the rides (the ferris wheel!!!), the fortune teller..... You made a real hit with me with this one :)

Sami said...

Loved the Bluebeard fair and his birth story too.
I wouldn't go on the Ferris wheel either as I'm scared of heights.

da tabbies o trout towne said...

bleu...manee thanx for de inn vite....we gived ya 984 pawz up over at de big top...did ya heer uz yellin yur name when ring master crowned ya king....thiz fair rockz...we like de merry go round N rided de sea horze 9 timez, de for chew teller ladee said her saw fish in R few chure N her waz rite coz we just had two perch animalz was way friend lee N now we R gonna ride de feriz wheel N hope ta cod de skiez ree mane burd free ~~~~~ manee thanx again for de tickitz...we R havin a grate time !!! ~~~ ☺☺♥♥

Jeanie said...

Love the cheer of this! And glad you are using the watercolor pencils -- they're such fun and have a nice feel. Plus, always fun to learn how to master something new.

A BIG thank you for your comments and understanding on my recent Gypsy post and for giving me the support and courage this non-confrontational woman is going to need here. Means a WHOLE LOT!

sheila 77 said...

Oh Elizabeth I am so glad I got back in time to visit Bleubeard's fair.
Wouldn't it have been awful to have missed it.
I'm glad you kept him company on the rides, that was brave of you to go on the one with heights.
No, I don't know what Bleubeard's fortune is, have I missed something? At a guess it is that he will live a pampered and luxurious life with you and be famous all over the world because of his blog. Is that right?
Your drawings and colours are great and wow, look at that old set of pencils, who wouldn't love to play with them.
This is such a fun blogpost, a tour-de-force.

Meggymay said...

Oh Elizabeth I have really enjoyed my visit here tonight.
Of course Bleubeard was the star of this post and rightly so, You have both taken us on a wonderful trip to the fair.
It is a fabulous page and you created a great festive atmosphere as the story unfolded. I hope you have both recovered from the rides and the long action packed day out
Yvonne xx

Pamela Gerard said...

A Bleubeard royal celebration! How delightful. And watercolor pencils. Those are good too.

Anonymous said...

I can see him, but where was his throne? Cute tall tale(tail) xox

Dianne said...

oh, love this county fair piece!! the watercolor pencil box looks glad you tried them out!! it does get easier with practice. You can color with them just like crayons, and then wet the colored-in area, but I've also seen people take a wet paint brush to the tip of the pencil to get color on it, and then just paint with it. your piece turned out great. ♥

pearshapedcrafting said...

I love a County Show! They are sometimes called agricultural fairs but mostly take on the name of the County they are in! I would love Bluebeard's show - looks although there is lots to see! I spend my time watching the animals or visiting the craft tents! Hugs, Chrisx

Michele said...

such a wonderful story and pictures! this was a pure delight to read! xo