In December of 2017 we had a rain storm and it caused a lot of ice buildup. A blue jay landed on a cast-iron plant hanger I had outside and I snapped a photo of him. I entered the photo into a local contest and won! I realized that I had a virtual treasure trove of quilled bird patterns since I’d been taking bird photos since 2015. So, I used the photo and made this Paper Quilled Blue Jay from it.
I used Inkscape to create an SVG file from my photo. I uploaded the SVG to Cricut Design space and cut out a template, then outlined it with 1/8″ quilling strips. (I know… I NEVER use 1/8″, but I had some frames I wanted to fill)
I used Uni Posca paint markers to color in his beak and eyes and the white on his face. I also painted the darker blue of his lower body and tail.
After the paint was dry, I just began filling it in and outlining. I laid 1/8″ strips flat onto tight coils for his tail and parts of his wings.
One of my future projects is to convert all of my best bird photos into SVG’s. Right now I have a White Breasted Nuthatch, Great Blue Heron, Baltimore Oriole, and this Blue Jay completed and available on my Etsy shop. It really makes creating birds easy because it gives you an exact template to work on top of. See below for links.