So, I start with the customer's .jpgs and mess around a bit with the color, cropping, and whatever else I can do to enhance the appearance of the subject. It was neat getting to play around with birds for the first time. Their colors are so important, but occasionally, I like to draw the eye to the patterns on their bodies, the expressiveness of their faces and stance, as in the case of this guy below. I love how he's climbing a hiking boot! Such a delicate animal against a rough-and-tumble shoe. There's a trust there.This guy's name is Not Sure, and could there be a more appropriate photo to reflect his name? I think not! He totally looks like he's had just about enough of your shenanigans. You can see the dots fading away just like his patience. I know. I know. He's a bird, he already has wings, but who can't use an extra pair? I love the look in his eye. He's such a proud looking bird, he knows he looks good. His chest looks so soft and smooth. Seeing too many sickly animals in rescue, I love seeing healthy birds! I had to use this pic again, but this time, I had it reduced to 2.5x3.5 inches, then snipped him out paper doll style. His expression looks so different here. It's neat how you can bring out different aspects of an expression. Surrounded by a garden of flowers, I think he looks thoughtful, a little pensive.
Check out how freaking adorable these birds are. I have a few avian friends (Hello Monte, if you somehow broke out of your mondo huge cage and are reading this while pulling the keys off of your mom's computer.) like Monte, for example, who is a blue and gold macaw, and female. Apparently, sexing birds isn't like sexing rats where you can tell if they're boys or girls from all the way across the room. Very often birds names don't reflect their gender, but they don't seem to mind.
I love this little love bird! His expression is beyond adorable and check out those colors. I think photos of animals looking quizzically into the camera are precious anyway, but this guy is so focused, he appears to be looking so deeply into the lens, he may be watching the SLR movement. It's a pose that shows off that magnificent beak so well, too. I just want to reach out and touch it!
The client asked specifically for one card to have all her birds on it together. Not easy with so many birds and plumes all over the place! So, I decided to go with a "family portrait" style. I imagine it's even harder to get a group photo in real life, so I hope she likes this one. This guy is totally my favorite. I love all of these birds, but I swear this guy managed to twist his beak into a smile! Here he is, clearly enjoying his bath, so I surrounded him with button "bubbles". I want to grab this guy and give him a huge hug, but I don't think birds like that much, so it's probably a good thing that it's just a photo. That's all! I hope you enjoyed these birds as much as I did. I like making all sorts of cards, but the ones using clients' pet photos are my favorite. I feel like I get to know the animals in the pictures between working with the jpgs and collaging the images afterward. I hope these get the approval of their subjects.