The Twitter community has been known to unearth things most people overlook—and turn them into news worldwide, from custom Ikea couch fails to alligators breaking and entering. Recently, users have rediscovered the iconic photos of Donald Featherstone, creator of the timeless pink plastic lawn ornament flamingo, and the internet's reaction has been priceless.
The photos, taken of the late and jubilant Donald Featherstone, feature the artist in a literal field of his pink-hued creations. The most exciting photo has to be the one where he's covered in flamingos, with just his head peaking out over their beaks.
I can only hope that one day I am able to live my life with as much purpose as Donald Featherstone, inventor of the plastic pink lawn flamingo. pic.twitter.com/Kl99ffX3Wv
— Sarah McGonagall (@sarahmcgbeauty) July 3, 2019
Twitter users responded with their love for the pink flamingo man, as well as photos of their own plastic birds decorating their lawns.
Our pink flamingos Zoey & Mike. They will be having kids! pic.twitter.com/jikiokF3VJ
— Jess (@jessenchantment) July 3, 2019
— donna (@dc5150319) July 3, 2019
Original Featherstone flamingos are still available for purchase on outlets like Amazon, and, of course, many knockoffs have been created since the plastic pink flamingo's birth in 1957. In tribute to the designer, here are a few things you should know about him and his work.
So, who is the man behind the iconic plastic pink flamingo?
Donald Featherstone was an artist that created the infamous plastic pink lawn flamingo back in 1957. According to Twitter user @sarahmcgbeauty, who composed the viral tweet, "He designed the flamingoes in 1957, kept 57 of them in his front yard year-round, rarely ever told anyone he created them, and dressed identically to his wife for over 35 years. A true American icon."
Donald passed away back in 2015, but his legacy lives on—in the form of the beloved lawn ornament, of course.
I had to search for photos of the matching couple, how precious ugh pic.twitter.com/J0P1t7fGZ6
— k8lyn (@pizza_poison) July 3, 2019
In an article written by his wife, Nancy Featherstone, appearing in The Guardian, she writes about how fashionable of a man her late husband was. Part of the article from 2013 reads: "Now, 35 years on, we have four wardrobes of twin outfits, hanging two by two, organized by season and occasion. I always make myself a feminine version of Donald's outfit, though; it's not unisex, because I like ruffles and girly things. I'd describe our style as traditional—we're not concerned about following fashion."
How did the pink plastic flamingo originate?
According to The New York Times, Donald graduated from the school at the Worcester Art Museum and took his first job at Union Products, a manufacturer of plastic lawn ornaments, in Leominster, Massachusetts. It was during his second assignment—to design a plastic pink flamingo, of course—where the iconic ornament was created.
He based his design off of photos from nature outlets like National Geographic, and ultimately settled on a plastic pink bird in two positions—one with the neck up, and one with it down.
After his passing, Donald's home in Fitchburg was decorated with 57 plastic pink flamingos.
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