To create his paintings, John James Audubon shot birds and contorted their bodies into dramatic poses by wiring and pinning them onto boards. The quirky and flamboyant postures he used were not immediately popular with the scientific community, but today they are renowned. It was Roger Tory Peterson who pioneered the idea of a field guide. His guides highlight observable marks, pointed out by carefully placed arrows, which allow for the identification of birds at a distance. Peterson painted thousands of systematic illustrations of birds in static poses based on photographs, bird skins and field observations. Field guides have allowed hobbyists, artists and scientists to identify birds with binoculars instead of a shotgun. Ornithologists now use mist nets. These nearly invisible nets are set up like fences and function as huge spider webs, catching unsuspecting birds. The researcher carefully extracts the bird from the net. Each bird is measured, aged, sexed and banded with an individually numbered anklet. Then the bird is released. I photographed these birds while they are caught in mist nets, moments before the ornithologist extracts them. Here, the birds inhabit a fascinating space between our framework of the bush and the hand. It is a fragile and embarrassing moment before they disappear back into the woods, and into data.
+ Limited-edition, exclusive to 20x200
+ Museum quality: archival inks, 100% cotton rag paper unless noted
+ Signed + numbered certificate of authenticity included
+ Directly supports the artist
+ Handcrafted custom-framing is available
Our quoted dimensions are for the size of paper containing the images, not the printed image itself. We do not alter the aspect ratio, nor do we crop or resize the artists’ originals. All of our prints have a minimum border of .5 inches to allow for framing.