Watching live birds and studying field guides are an important part of developing the carving patterns and paint schemes for my birds. I’m continually frustrated with developing an understanding for such anatomy basics as head shape (when viewed from forward or above) or tail shape (from above) or color (undersides).
I few weeks ago I approached a local nature center to gain access to their mounted bird collection. They developed a relationship with an outstanding taxidermist and have been working to improve their collection. They are thrilled that someone wants to access them.
I began this morning and will post photos as I sort them out. I spend 30-40 minutes with each bird photographing, drawing and taking notes. I worked with four birds this morning: the red bellied woodpecker, a whip-poor-will, a common yellowthroat and a blue jay.
Photos were taken for my own reference. I apologize for distracting backgrounds.
I’m posting the jay below. If you have a specific interest in a specific bird, let me know. Much of the collection are window strikes at a woodland nature center. Most are wodland birds and there are many warblers.