Birds are big! Especially at San Francisco-based Chelsea Grove’s Etsy shop, BirdNerd, where they are the exclusive, endearing subjects of her artwork. Each bird in Chelsea’s shop is perched alone or with other birds on branches, and every bird comes with a personal story. She has over 100 pieces to choose from.My favorite bird from among all of Chelsea’s flock is a wonderful barn owl in an original painting called Twilight Awakening. His curious eyes peer out from his white heart-shaped face as he wakes up for a twilight breakfast hunt. You just know there is a story in this piece!
My second favorite is of a stunning bearded raven, outlined in front of a star-studded river (of air, or water? Let your imagination go). A look in his bright eye will draw you in and make you wonder why he seems to be so proud.
Using a vivid, stylized approach to her art, Chelsea portrays her birds with paint and multicolored Japanese art paper to make rich, lively collages of every kind of bird from jays to hummingbirds and robins to chickadees. She says she has been inspired by the elements of the Eastern tradition of art and Art Nouveau, which is her favorite historical period of art.
Her highly detailed work is not collage in the traditional sense, rather “painting with paper.” In addition, she creates bird-themed linocuts in single colors, which can be mixed and matched on a wall, or hung alone. Her work is being acquired by interior designers, wholesale shops, as well as individuals. The prints and original paintings are very reasonably priced, and will add a sweet pleasant presence to any room.
Archival prints of the collages are available in 5 x 7, 8 x 10, postcard size, and really nice note card sets that make great gifts, (and be sure to get a set for yourself!) If you want to add some color to your jacket, try a button (one inch).
Visit BirdNerd at http://birdnerd.etsy.com, and to find out more about BirdNerd’s creator, visit Chelsea’s website, http://sevorg.org/chelsea/index.html.
--Reviewed by Anne B Wright, Beach Street Beads