London-based artist Zack Mclaughlin constructs uncannily realistic birds made from wood and cut paper leaves. A lifelong fascination with the natural world lead Mclaughlin to explore different kinds of 3d model making, first starting with wire and then moving into the more realistic sculptures you see here. You can see more of his recent work on DeviantArt and in his shop. (via Lustik)
The stories of a unique bond between a child and their pet are as timeless as they come, but rarely does the pet have wings. Such is the case with photographer Cameron Bloom whose son Noah happened upon a baby magpie in 2013 when the family was out walking near their home in Newport, Australia. After consulting with a veterinarian, the family learned to raise the orphaned bird, who they affectionately named Penguin.
A year later, the curious bird has deeply integrated with the family. Despite being free to come and go outdoors, she always returns to the Bloom household where Cameron, his wife Sam, and their sons Rueben, Noah, and Oli eagerly await her return. On rare occasions, Penguin even shows off her adopted family to other magpies who have followed her inside the house.
Just yesterday, New York Times bestselling author Bradley Trevor Greiveannounced that he’ll be writing a book about Penguin and the Blooms, accompanied by Cameron’s photography. You can see more on his website. All photos shared here courtesy the photographer. (via Beautiful Decay, ABC)
While standing in her backyard garden this morning around 9:20am in Leicestershire, UK, photographer Amy Shore snapped away at a perfectly clear view of a total solar eclipse with her Nikon D600. What she didn’t know until after the fact was that a lone bird was crossing the viewfinder at just the right moment. Via email Shore mentions that as a full-time photographer she normally shoots weddings, and the split-second decision to take this shot was a happy accident. It’s not immediately clear if there happened to be a weasel riding on the bird.
This eclipse was the first viewable over the UK in the social media age and photos, videos, and accounts like this have spread everywhere since this morning. The Guardian in particular had fantastic minute-to-minute coverage.
Update: Photographer Andrew Brooks got a similar shot in Manchester.
Not content with boring old inanimate origami, Japanese designer and maker Ugoita T. assembled this clever electromagnetic stage to bring his paper cranes to life. While the idea of moving paper creations around with magnets is fun, it’s the synchronization that really makes this hilarious. (via Digg)
Videographer Paul Parker used the ‘echo’ effect in video editing software After Effects to show the flight paths of birds near his home in Cornwall, UK. Parker also filmed birds flying past his window for an hour and compressed it into just a few seconds to show what it would look like if they all flew by at once. Artist Dennis Hlynsky uses the same effect any many of his own bird and insect videos seen here previously. (via Kottke)
A few years ago we mentioned LEGO and bird enthusiast Thomas Poulsom who designed a beautiful series of LEGO bird specimens. Poulsom submitted his concept to LEGO Ideas, and enough people voted to turn the birds into an official kit that includes his blue jay, robin, and humming bird models. The bird sets went on sale a few hours ago. (via Laughing Squid)
Update: Whoa, it looks like the kits sold out in the process of me writing this, but you can still order for delivery within 30 days.
Using a small scalpel as his primary tool, artist Chris Maynard (previously) carves artwork out of feathers giving them new life on a canvas. “Each feather, though dead and discarded, keeps something of the bird’s essence,” Maynard tells us. Indeed, the colorful and sometimes humorous creations highlight the feather’s beauty but also encourages us to ponder the life of its previous owner. “Since I work mostly with shed feathers, some of the birds that grew them are likely still living,” adds Maynard. If you’d like to learn more about Maynard and his work he has a new book out titled Feathers, Form, and Function. (via Colossal Submissions)