Poor owls. They didn’t ask to become a ubiquitous totem of hipsterdom, their wise eyes peering out every which way you turn in the housewares section of Urban Outfitters. Quite the opposite, in fact. In many cultures, these solitary, nocturnal birds were considered a bad omen. The Maya and Aztecs thought they were a symbol of death. In other words, they’ve been through a lot, so try to keep an open mind as you gaze upon these lovely — and surprisingly realistic! — drawings of the feathered creatures by Kiwi artist John Pusateri, as spotted by Colossal. Click through to check out a few of his owls, and if you like the work, consider buying an original from Seed Gallery.