Tag Archives: birds

An Elegant Kinetic Sculpture by Derek Hugger that Mimics the Flight of a Hummingbird 

Containing over 400 precisely machined gears, screws, and aesthetic elements, Derek Hugger’s latest kinetic sculpture Colibri mimics the motion of a hummingbird in flight. Though the motions of flying are unmistakable, the piece has much more in common with a clock than a bird. He shares about the piece:

Every element of motion has been completely mechanized, from the beating wings to the flaring tail. Intricate systems of linkages and cams bring the sculpture to life with a continuous flow of meticulously timed articulations. As each mechanism has been linked to the next, Colibri cycles through its complete range of motions by the simple turn of a crank. This project took me roughly 700 hours and contains about 400 parts.

You can see many more of his moving artworks on his website, and in a refreshingly rare move he also sells detailed instructions of how to make them in his shop. (via The Automata Blog)

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Remarkable High Speed Photos of Birds Catching Fish by Salah Baazizi 

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Double-crested Cormorant working on its catch, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Elegant Tern, Double Crested Cormorant and a fish.

Photographer Salah Baazizi has an amazing knack for photographing birds up close and personal as they pluck fish from the waters around Bolsa Chica in southern California. The split-second shots of terns, herons, and cormorants give the illusion Baazizi is sitting just inches away, practically sticking a camera down their beaks, but in reality he uses a 400mm super telephoto lens and positions himself at great distances. This is only the smallest fraction of the hobbyist photographer’s wildlife photos, you can explore hundreds of additional shots over on Flickr.

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Elegant Tern, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Great Blue Heron working on its catch, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Elegant tern losing its fish, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Forster’s Tern doing the contortionist, Irvine (CA)

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Great Blue Heron working on its catch, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Elegant Tern, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Elegant Tern, Bolsa Chica (CA)

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Elegant Tern displaying its acrobatic aerial skills after a fish escaped from its beak.

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Paintings of Birds Sprinkled with Color by Frank Gonzales 

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Artist Frank Gonzales refers to his process as a cross-pollination of elements, a mixture of realism and artificiality expressed through acrylic paintings of birds perched atop plants and crystaline formations. “I like to construct and deconstruct during the process, leaving traces of my journey in the end results,” Gonzales says. His careful depictions of wildlife are somewhat reminiscent of Audubon’s style, but the colorful drips of paint and other surreal elements gives each painting a fresh, illustrative feel.

Gonzales most recently toured around New Mexico with Santa Fe Exports and he has a number of prints and original paintings available through several galleries. You can also follow his work on Instagram.

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An Abandoned Indonesian Church Shaped Like a Massive Clucking Chicken 

Towering above the trees in a densely forested area of Indonesia lies a giant chicken. The gigantic structure has the body, tail, and head of the bird, even holding open its beak in what appears to be mid-squawk. Although the very old bird is quickly decaying, Gereja Ayam (as the locals call it) attracts hundreds of photographers and travelers to its location in Magelang, Central Java each year who are looking to explore the bird’s bizarre interior.

The building was originally built as a prayer house by 67-year-old Daniel Alamsjah after he received a divine message from God. Although he intended the building to resemble a dove, the locals care more that it looks like a chicken, nicknaming it “Chicken Church.” In addition to a prayer house, Alamsjah also used the building as a rehabilitation center, treating disabled children, drug addicts, and others. Alamsjah was forced to shut the center’s doors fifteen years ago after steep construction costs.

Currently five of the eight pillars holding up the building are crumbling while graffiti covers the inside walls. No longer a place for therapy, the building still serves as a place for worship and travel and according to locals—a private spot for many young couples to hide away from parents or prying eyes. (via Hyperallergic and Daily Mail)

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Free Ride: A Crow Catches a Lift on the Back of a Bald Eagle 

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Photographer Phoo Chan has seen more than his fair share of spectacular moments while photographing birds and other wildlife around his home in California, but perhaps nothing will ever top what he witnessed last spring while shooting near Kitsap, Washington: a crow riding atop a bald eagle. It only lasted for a few seconds, but Chan managed to capture the entire encounter on film. He shares about the image:

Crows are known for aggressively harassing other raptors that are much bigger in size when spotted in their territories and usually these ‘intruders’ simply retreat without much fuss. However, in this frame the crow did not seem to harass the bald eagle at such close proximity and neither did the bald eagle seem to mind the crow’s presence invading its personal space. What made it even more bizarre was that the crow even made a brief stop on the back of the eagle as if it was taking a free scenic ride and the eagle simply obliged.

You can see more of Chan’s bird photography on 500px and Flickr. (via Bored Panda, @pourmecoffee, Stellar)

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Towering New Pigeon Murals by ‘Super A’ 

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Ah yes, the majestic pigeon. An unlikely source of inspiration for such dominating murals, but at the hands of Dutch street artist Stefan Thelen aka Super A (previously) these ubiquitous urban dwellers are turned into something surprisingly beautiful. His latest piece at top was just completed for Mural Goes in Goes, Netherlands. Check out more of his paintings and other works on his website. (via StreetArtNews)

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