In a painting space somewhere on the outskirts of Bristol ....

Day 1

Brushed him down and gave him a wipe over to get rid of any dust. Added a bit of my main colour (lime) to a tub of clear gesso and gave him two coats all over. Painted the first coat of white on his face and the first coat of lime on his legs. Aching ... using muscles I didn't know I had.

Day 2

Very excited this morning and couldn't wait to get back to the painting space. Gave his legs and face some more coats, painted tail and outside of ears black. Generally adding more coats of paint to each part to build up colour (it takes loads!). Chalked out the shape of the sash across his body and gave it two coats of yellow.

Day 3

More coats of paint to hat, body, sash and face. Sketched out eye mask with chalk then went over the outline with a paint pen before filling it in with black paint. Sketched bird (named 'Chickpea' as she's a cross between a chicken and a peahen!). A few changes to be made here but will leave until tomorrow now as tiredness is starting to kick in.

Day 4

Made some adjustments to Chickpea and gave her several coats of paint. Used a light coloured chalk to mark out dots on the sash to help me position the lettering. Sketched in the words 'carnival' and 'king' VERY carefully with a white paint pen, rubbed off the chalk, then went over it again with a black paint pen. Really had to use my full concentration at this point as didn't want to mess up! Filled in lettering with two coats of black paint then chalked and painted in the white dots on his face.

Day 5

Chalked and painted in sun on his back then gave it three coats of paint. Did yellow bands on legs and suns on face. Chalked in droplets on leg bands ready for tomorrow. Drew two chicks on the back of Shaun's head to add interest to an otherwise blank space.

Day 6/7 (two half days)

Added two coats of black paint to leg bands and droplets and made some small adjustments to Chickpea. Another coat of paint on the sun and further coats to chicks. White bands painted onto his feet and finished black and yellow bands around legs. Gave body a further coat of lime as it was still looking slightly patchy, then chalked and painted in the eyes which took three coats. Painted in another sun and cut in around the ears with black paint, ready to do final coat tomorrow.

Day 8

Final touches today. Generally tidying up and touching up any patchy bits. Clearing workspace, washing brushes for the last time and taking photos of Shaun and some of his mates who were also being painted! Really sad to say goodbye to him, but we will meet again in the summer once he's been varnished.

It's been a BLAST!