Every year, artist Chris Maynard watches for birds to shed their plumage, collects the discarded materials, and gives new life to the fallen feathers. His Cut Feather Shadowboxes are an amazing display of natural resources transformed into intricate hand-carved sculptures.
Maynard uses tiny eye surgery scissors, forceps, and magnifying glasses to create the lively scenes where smaller birds emerge from the feathery backgrounds. He adds depth to each carving by placing it into a shadowbox, allowing the lights, shadows, and textures to work together in dynamic arrangements.
His passion for birds is evident in the wide variety of feathers, flapping wings, and tiny perches that are prominent throughout each piece. The artist is particularly fascinated by feathers because he says they “mark nature’s pinnacle of achievement: the intersection of function and beauty. They make flight possible, act as incredible insulation, and their colors and patterns attract mates and help them hide.”