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Feathers, photographed and scanned.
June 13, 2013 9:28 AM   Subscribe

Feathers, photographed and scanned.
So I've been photographing and scanning feathers for a little over a year now. They're fascinating up close, and when printed over a foot tall reveal whole little universes. One problem...I'm running out of feathers! Mefites, I need your feathers! They will be photographed, scanned and then returned to you with a print.

I started out with a few blue jay feathers from a cat kill. Then I had a fly-tying friend give me a couple. Then I discovered you can buy some bird skins (which, as a vegetarian, was not without moral peril) online. But I've exhausted what I've found.

Do you have a songbird feather you love? A pet parrot? An owl's nest on your property? Memail me with what you have (I might have a pile already, ie guinea hen, ring-necked pheasant), I'll send you my address. If you can send me a feather or two, I'll pay the postage both ways, return your feather unscathed, a print along with it as well as my undying gratitude. Anything you send me will be very gently handled and stored.

I'm chasing down leads for a possible photo show of some of these shots, so you may be able to come to an opening as well.
Role: Photographer, scanner, retoucher, framer,
posted by nevercalm (9 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
This project was posted to MetaFilter by aniola on June 17, 2013: Feathers, photographed and scanned.

These are gorgeous! It would be nice to know what kind of birds the feathers are from.
posted by tractorfeed at 10:26 AM on June 13, 2013


Thanks! On that page are guinea hen, blue jay, mallard, ring necked pheasant, wood duck and one I have no clue about. I've thought about labelling them, but there are a few I can't identify, so I feel that if I can't identify them all, maybe I shouldn't identify any.
posted by nevercalm at 2:34 PM on June 13, 2013


I don't know if you've seen USFWS' Feather Atlas, but it's a)awesome for id-ing random feathers you find and b)pretty similar to what you're doing, but far less artistic.

I will be memailing you soon, I'm a little busy with work but I have a ton of wild collected feathers and I get more pretty much every day.
posted by primalux at 8:50 PM on June 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oooh, lovely! I will start keeping an eye out for feathers.
posted by bunderful at 12:32 PM on June 15, 2013


what about identifying the birds you know about, and for the unknown ones, ask people to contact you if they can identify the feather? - maybe that will help fill in the blanks

love this!
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 12:31 PM on June 17, 2013


I wonder if raptor centers or university avian science departments might be interested in lending you some feathers.
posted by aniola at 1:35 PM on June 17, 2013


Aww I liked them better without the watermarks. They made nice background pictures.
posted by aniola at 9:37 PM on June 17, 2013


I like them much better without the watermarks too, it's why I decided to put them up without them. But I checked my logs last night, and in clicking around found that a few people had linked them on pinterest, but they were living on other sites than mine. So, watermarks unfortunately...
posted by nevercalm at 5:28 AM on June 18, 2013


FYI, I just heard a piece on Public Radio's Morning Edition this morning on an ornithologist who is the one and only academic expert in her particular subspecialty - she identifies birds only through their feathers. The context of the talk was identifying which species of birds pythons are eating in the Florida Everglades, where they have become a huge problem to the native wildlife. Some of the feathers she works with are the merest remnants retrieved from the python gut. Not sure you need a scientist of her calibre, but I'm not even a particular bird lover, and I thought it was completely fascinating.
posted by citygirl at 12:06 PM on June 19, 2013


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