This is not a finch

In fact, it's not even a bird.

Strictly speaking, this is a papercraft model of a finch, and an incredibly realistic one at that. Dutch artist Johan Scherft has created a whole series of fantastically lifelike 3D bird (and dinosaur!) models, carefully crafted from paper templates which he designs on the computer and hand-colors in realistic hues with watercolour and gouache. The whole process can take him anywhere from a couple days to a full month – but the results are really exceptional. Some of them can even be manipulated like puppets!

If you're feeling inspired, Scherft has a number of templates available free of charge on his site, including one of an avian ancestor: a hatching Deinonychus. He's also posted a number of video tutorials on YouTube. We've included a few of our favorites here, but you'll want to check out his site for more.

This is not a finch

This is not a finch

This is not a finch

[Via Laughing Squid]