113th Balloon Sculpture, Phoenix


Well thanks to my friend Sage for alerting me to this magnificent design!

Andre Nolle has done it again!

This took a while to make let me tell you,lol. It took me longer because I was too afraid to string the feathers tightly like Andre demonstrates in his tutorial, I then realized they were just way too loose, and THEN I went back and carefully tightened them which was nerve-wracking but I totally got over my fear of stringing them tightly,lol.

I still was not able to properly tighten them as I should have and gotten them to curve as Andre’s did, but I just was not going to restring the feather sections again,lol. They were a lot tighter than they were before though and it still looked pretty dang cool,lol.

I did not like how Andre did the eyes and so did mine totally differently. I did the eyes by taking a small black balloon and making a tulip twist with it in a white 260, you tie the black balloon together with the white balloon. To get an idea of how to do that, look at Yonaimy’s Baby Mickey Parody instructional video that I will list below. How she does the nose is how I did the eyes.

I also didn’t want to use my precious stock of 160’s for the tail and instead used 5 260’s for it. I am on a budget and can only buy so much at a time,lol.

I glue dotted the black feathers to make it nice and streamlined and cleaner.

I have some ideas for experiments for the tail that I will try next time. I also think I should maybe make the neck shorter.

Man this design even makes you squeal when you make it!

Andre, you are wonderful! I have been wanting to do a serious wing design! Bravo Andre!!

I would love to adapt this and turn it into a bald eagle, which I intend to, really color change is the only thing you need. I do have an idea of how I would do the head feathers differently for an eagle though. I am thinking something like Holly Hopper’s rooster feathers for the rooster’s butt would look great. I will have to experiment and find out.

This was my first time using 350’s. I was so excited!

Here is a link to Andre’s tutorial=


Here is a link to Yonaimy’s Mickey parody where you can get an idea of how I did the eyes.


Below is my replication of Andre’s Phoenix design.

(FYI, if you have any advice or feedback whatsoever- feel free to share in a comment below.) 🙂

2013-01-16 13.32.53


2013-01-16 13.32.56 2013-01-16 13.32.46



6 responses »

  1. Okay, so, I made this thing last night. Whoo boy. Your advice about the tightening was extremely helpful and thanks to you I got the curve of the wing on the first try. I also LOVED yonaimy’s eyes, and I had to tell Nolle that for such a fantastic design he really should have done something better than those silly cartoon drawn on eyes. I said it to him as nice as possible, but I mean, really, he should know better. After creating something so brilliant you would think he would be catching little details like that. Anyway, here’s what I did: I used yonaimy’s eyes like you did, and I also shortened the neck quite a bit. It worked, I believe. I also added my own spin on the design by giving the bird a wild rainbow mohawk (rainbows are usually my signature) by blowing up 6 160s red orange yellow green blue purple about a quarter of the way, then making a little bubble at the end of each uninflated portion with a good amount of each 160 in the mohawk left uninflated and bobbing with the bubble at the end. To finish it off, I made the legs kinda smaller and held back as if the bird were in flying mode, and for the tail I again used red orange yellow green blue purple (6 160s) each folded in half for 12 total tail feathers. This thing was a BEAST to make, we are so lucky to have someone like Andre to teach these ludicrously fabulous designs! I’m also lucky to have you to post about the problems with learning the design and the way you improved it, it made things a lot easier for me, thank you.

    • Oh good, I am so glad I could be of help! Your spin sounds beautiful! I love that your signature is rainbows! Glad that you got the curve on the first try and were not afraid, lol. Wasn’t it scary? I as you know was so scared of that process, lol. Now I am over it, but it will always be nerve wracking, lol. I want to make the neck smaller next time too and am glad you tried that and were pleased.

      Yes, I am sooo thankful for Andre! I am so grateful that he is willing to make these long tutorials for these bigger and wowzier projects. I am going to tackle the giant Spiderman parody when my balloons come in.

      Felix Yoldi would make these super awesome things, like his Chef, but refuse to make a tutorial because of the length of time it would take but I wouldn’t care, I would watch! That is my only grief with Felix, lol. Andre, Felix and Iancarlo4 are my top 3 favorite instructors on YouTube.

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