Chris Maynard uses feathers as his medium to create art because he wants people to see the world in new ways. He feels successful when people see his work or read his new book and say, “I will never see feathers and birds in the same way.”
Like any artist, he wants to capture an essence of life in my work. He feels fortunate in this because each shed feather retains an essence of the bird it came from. These shed feathers are gifts from the birds that grew them, many of which are alive and well. All his feathers are legal to use, collected from private aviaries and zoos.
He says, “I want to honor feathers and the birds they came from by keeping their natural shapes and colors. Since feathers are three-dimensional, I set them apart from their backgrounds, which allows shadows to participate in the final designs. Feather sizes and colors are limited, which makes using their shapes and the cutouts critical to each piece’s final unity of design.”
Mr. Maynard uses eye surgery scissors, forceps and scalpels to carve the feathers. The Huffington Post wrote, “This artist must be in possession of the tiniest nimble hands.” But he says, if you use magnifying glasses, you will find that your hand-eye coordination is quite good, affected by what you see, not how small it is.