Happy Memorial Day weekend! We’re starting to have serious summer weather here, which always puts me in the mood for nature puzzles. Tigers, elephants, cows, lizards, and birds–all are frequent subjects of jigsaw puzzles. These puzzles bring a little bit of nature into the house.
You don’t have to be a birdwatcher or be able to name a hundred species to appreciate a nice bird puzzle. The bird kingdom is full of different colors, shapes, sizes, and patterns, making birds quite good subjects for puzzles. There are even some brilliant and neon colors in the bird family. It’s hard to imagine anything more colorful than parrots. As you can tell from this week’s reviews, sometimes I’m in the mood to give my eyes a rest from the uber busy cartoon or other detail puzzles and do something that can be pieced together without a lot of reference to the box lid. Something soothing. Nature puzzles are certainly that. And because I’m also an avid hiker, I love to get that feeling of being in the woods that a nature puzzle can bring.
I pulled my top ten favorite bird puzzles from the Puzzle Warehouse virtual shelves. Okay, I cheated and it’s really a list of my top twelve. I just couldn’t eliminate two more! Counting up to the very best….
12. “A Winter’s Silent Night” by Abraham Hunter, Sunsout — 1000 pieces
I love the night time colors in this image and the town/lights/lavender bits in the middle. Combine that with the different colored birds and pine needles that appear along both vertical edges, and it looks like a fun and quick puzzle to assemble. Sort of Christmasy too.
11. “Candlelit Window” by Terry Doughty, Sunsout — 1000 pieces
I love this soft image by Terry Doughty. The natural framing of the log cabin wall and window, and the vignette out the window, make good separate areas of assemble. I also like the unusual dimensions of this panoramic puzzle.
10. “Evening Meadow” by Hautman Brothers, Buffalo Games — 1000 pieces
This is a new puzzle from Buffalo and one I’d really like to review. The composition with the white fence at the bottom of the image, the flowered tree branches on the left and right, and the farm scene in the middle, give nice clear areas to assemble. I also quite like the vivid colors on the birds and flowers and it’s just a lovely summery scene.
9. “Birds of the Back Yard” by Ernest O. Brown, White Mountain — 1000 pieces
This is an oldy but a goody, a collage by Ernest O. Brown from White Mountain’s early “educational puzzles” days. It’s quite fun to assemble with the wide, encyclopedia-like border all the way around, and the bright colors of the birds in the inner scene. You can learn a lot too.
8. “Birducopia” by Charley Harper, Pomegranate — 1000 pieces
This was the first Pomegranate puzzle I ever did, and I was very impressed by the quality of it. There’s a variety of birds in here from turkeys (lower left) to woodpeckers and blue jays. I love Charley’s Harper’s minimalistic design sense too. Here’s my original review.
This was one of the first puzzles I reviewed for this website (you can see the original review here). I was drawn to the image because of the woodsy pine needles, the quaint little bird house, and the brightly color birds. The Springbok quality is also quite good (I love the tight fit). This is a fun puzzle to assemble–but the pine needles are hard!
5. “Birds and Blossoms” by Jerry Gadamus, White Mountain — 1000 pieces
This is a new puzzle from White Mountain. I like how the focus is on the birds themselves in this image. The blossom pattern is almost like wallpaper rather than a real scenic background, so the focus stays on the large birds. The white blossoms and leaves will offer extra interest in assembly because there’s a lot of repetition, but the way they’re dispersed around the birds should mean you usually have a tip of color to work with.
4. “Birds of a Feather” by Finchley Paper Arts, Sunsout — 1000 pieces
Finchley Paper Arts is a fairly new puzzle artist with a lot of puzzle releases from different brands in the past two years. Lorna, the woman behind Finchley Paper Arts, combines vintage images in a whole new way to create awesome collages. This collage puzzle from Sunsout is no exception. I love the colors. Great puzzle image!
3. “Parrot’s Paradise” by Lori Shory, Sunsout — 1000 pieces
Getting to the top of my list now, obviously this is a puzzle that could have been designed just to please me. It’s a standout from the extravagant shaped outline to the uber bright colors. I haven’t done this puzzle yet but I will someday!
2. “Birds of the Forest” by Jerry Gadamus, Cobble Hill — 1000 pieces
Wow, this is a stunning image. Why do I rank it number two? Solely based on its appeal to my aesthetic. It feels very rural to me with the fallen fence and the pink roses still climbing it. We have a wide array of different colored and patterned bird species painted in great detail. And I love the soft light and bokeh background. This is one worthy to be framed
14. “Rosemary’s Birds” by Rosemary Millette, Cobble Hill — 2000 pieces
I have to put this puzzle at the top of my list because there’re so many things I love about it. I like the 2000 piece size, the seven different ‘vignettes’ to put together like separate puzzle, the art style, and the bright colors. You can read my full review of this puzzle here.