Friday, December 28, 2012
Fall River Flyrods and the Outdoor Blogger Network for providing the opportunity to not only fish with a one of kind masterpiece but for this LUCKY angler to actually own it.
Last year I fished this same rod on a few stretches of Chattooga river system but with the high reaching over 100 degrees it was a tough time. For you that follow this humble anglers blog, look forward to a year of posts involving this fly rod because I plan on fishing it a lot. My only hope is that I don't break it on the first trip out. That would kill me.
Please take the time to visit this great rod manufacturing team at Fall River Flyrods and see all they have going on. It you are looking for QUALITY, and we all are, then check them out.
Sunday, December 23, 2012
Just a quick moble post to announce that I am the winner of the Fall River Fly rod contest! Are you kidding me!!!! Outdoorbloggernetwork.com sponsored this fantastic traveling piece of bamboo around the country and somehow I ended up as the winner! I'm actually to excited to think clearly right now so another post will be required to add the details but right now I'm just bragging. Merry Freekin Christmas to me! Thankyou , thankyou, thankyou!
Saturday, December 22, 2012
A few of you out there might have noticed that I skipped the Fly Friday post yesterday. Truth is I completely forgot about it. With the Christmas holiday right around the corner I have busy working on projects and gifts for family and friends. For example, this wood sign above was created for a friend that is a retired Submariner. (don't worry - he gets the suprise tonight and wont see this till then.) For this post its about a fishy as it gets because the other sign I created was for a big car guy with an obsession for the Cadillac.
Speaking about Tattoos I thought I would give you an update on the Tatt I helped create for a fellow angler up in the North East. A while ago I did a post on a the life cycle of the mayfly.
Unfortunately her response was less than excited about it. I simply told her that you need to be fly fisherman to understand it. Its ok because she also doesn't understand why I get up at 4am to go fishing in a driving rain or go hiking 8 miles just to chase small trout in the mountains during a chance snow storm. Its an obsession and to steal a phrase from the Jeep owners out there: "Its a Fly fishing thing - You wouldn't understand."
Swamp Yankee site.
I am not sure when the next post will be coming, mostly due to a massive amount of work that has been added to my load, so I wanted to wish all of you a very merry Christmas. I hope your year has been a blessed one and you get to spend some quality time with the family to celebrate the birth of our Lord. Have a Great Holiday!
Monday, December 17, 2012
|"Patrol" 8x10 Watercolor Charcoal Pencil Sketch - $45|
If you would like to purchase any of these works just shoot me and email and I'll send out a paypal invoice for you. As always -Paypal invoices can be payed via a paypal account or any major credit card.
|"Horse & Cowboy" 8x6 Watercolor Charcoal Pencil - $14|
|"Bamboo" 4x5 in Watercolor - $20|
|"Fujiaka Kabari" Tenkara Fly 4x5 Watercolor - $10|
|"Sakasa Guj Kebari" Tenkara Fly 4x5 Watercolor -$10|
|"Purple & Orange" Tenkara Fly 4x5 Watercolor - $9|
|"Ginger Quill" 8x6 Watercolor -$10|
|"Beaded Nymph" 4x5 Watercolor - $10|
|"Feather & Three Flies" 8x10 Watercolor - $14|
|"Poor Sally" 5x7 Scratched Black Clayboard - $8|
After a few days I will be re-posting this sale on a separate page but after the 1st of January this deal will end. Prices do not include a S&H charge of $5.65 which will be included on the final invoice. Some of the paintings will come in their own mat while a few are just naked art. Thanks for your support over the past year and may the coming Christmas holiday bring you and yours peace and joy.
Page Updated 12/22/2012
Friday, December 14, 2012
Never one to waste an opportunity I thought it might be a good way to present the life cycle of an insect so important to us fly anglers.
Starting life as a nymph, the mayfly can live under water for as little as a few weeks on up to a year or more depending on the species. Some species (BWO for example) are apt to swim during this stage, while others such as the PMD or the the nymph illustrated to the right, are clingers or crawlers, and a few others - the Hex being the prime example - are burrowers. Regardless of this, the one thing they all have in common is that during this stage they all form a hard exoskeleton that protects them from the harsh underwater environment. What it doesn't protect them from is the hungry trout that readily feed on them.
As a full grown adult the Mayfly's life is a relatively short lived experience. It is fare to say that the life blood of the Mayfly is the water system in which it has grown up and they tend to stay fairly near that source. It is during this stage that they need to find a mate as quickly as possible before they die. Some species such as the Hexagenia - or Hex - fly of the Midwest often does not live longer than a single night while others can linger on for a week or so. Simple put, these flies live out their short lives like a Monty Brewster (Classic 80's movie reference there!). They have only a short time to spend all they got or they will have nothing.
So for this Fly Friday take the time to appreciate the lowly mayfly who provides us with an endless supply of inspiration for fantastic fly patterns to catch trout.
Have a GREAT WEEKEND!
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
It seems that those little buggers that have infected nearly everyone I know over the previous weeks have finally caught up with me. A massive head cold is never fun and I have spent the last two days with a head full of gunk but as I try to look on the bright side, it has allowed me more time to spend with the family instead of being on the road for work.
It also has allowed me to complete some online testing for my job that I have been putting off. Unfortunately, as I sit down in quiet studio to work I find myself doodling and reading the fly fishing news from around the interweb instead doing of what I should be doing. I believe that the quote is: "Never do today what you can put off till tomorrow". Its not a lesson I encourage anyone to live by but occasionally I find myself doing just that.
Christmas came early for me and I wasn't going to wait to open it. Thanks once again to the OBN, I was the privileged enough to be picked to test out a new product. The boys over at Jetflow Hydration Systems sent me this sweet looking pack to try out. This Tomahawk pack is unique because of the no-bladder system which eliminated the tedious cleaning of a that enclosed bladder. Instead it uses everyday bottles one can get in any store. For a guy like me that loves to trek into the farthest reaches of trout streams - this pack is fantastic. Load up with a single bottle of water - add a few purification tablets in the pocket to refill the bottle on the stream - stuff my spare fly box in the perfectly sized pouch, and hit the trail.
Now if I can only shake this cold so I can test it out!
Friday, December 7, 2012
I love the dry fly as much as the next guy but sometimes I need the drug of the tug and the winter is the perfect time for that. So for this Fly Friday I give You some un-solicited advice: Forget the dry fly and go swing some streamers.
As far as the art goes - I know I have been phoning it in a lot lately with the inked sketches but the list of things to do before the holidays just doesn't seem to get any smaller and time is at a premium. The paint will just have to wait for a bit.
But if you would like the Original of this 6x6.5in ink and colored pencil sketch it can be yours for the low price of $20 - Its on high quality Bristol Acid free paper with archival inks so it will last a Very Long time. Honestly I am running out of room to store all the art I have created for this blog.
One more thing - I only have a few sets of these Holiday Cards remaining and time is running out before the holiday so quit procrastinating and Email me to get yours today.
Sunday, December 2, 2012
The Greenback -in case you don't already know - was once considered an extinct species until a few surviving groups of these fish were found in small secluded streams in the Rocky Mountain National Park. Through careful re-introduction and the lengthy efforts of a few dedicated fly fishing groups like Trout Unlimited and the Greenbacks, this native fish has rebounded from the brink to become a poster child for native trout population conservation. In 1994 the Greenback Trout became the official fish of the state of Colorado and solidified its status in American Fly Fishing lore.
I took a very different approach than I usually do when painting this particular fish. Normally I have a fairly controlled style of brush stroke; clean lines and smooth blending. But for this I had a bit of the Blue Moon rising in me and I went a bit crazy - tossing paint around and whipping the colors together until the desk and my shirt where also covered with a splattering of the bright pigments. I must say that I liked the finish effect and although I have used a similar style of painting on other works - I find myself wondering why I don't let the paint flow freely more often. I suspect the beer helps...
The Greenback Trout
- Watercolor and Gouache on Paper
- Size - @ 9in x 6in.
- Status - Available
Email Me for Purchasing
Friday, November 30, 2012
I've been doing a bit of traveling this past week and spent most of my free time doodling on a pad of paper. The results were a few mayflies, fishing flies, and fish (you saw the bass on Wednesdays post). Here is a fly whose name caught my eye while surfing the net. It comes from Classic Trout and inspired by a fly from the vise of J.B. Martin.
Hook Size: 8 - 14 2x
Tag: Flat Gold Tinsel.
Tail: Duck Quill of Orange, White and Green.
Butt: Green Peacock Herl.
Body: Flat Gold Tinsel with mid-point of black ostrich herl.
Ribbing: Fine Oval Gold Tinsel.
Throat: Green Peacock herl with Claret, Green, Black and White hackle fibers as beard.
Wing: Lemon Wood Duck fibers with Claret , Green, Black and White hackle fibers.
Anyone that loves the history of fly fishing has got to love the look of these wet flies. Even if the success of wet flies for me is a checkered affair, I respect the look and heritage behind them.
And then there is the classic streamers. Beautifully simple and effective, flies like this Jungle Cock cheeked Rainbow Trout streamer have proven time and time again that for hooking aggressive trout, the streamer is king. I leave it to you to decide how to create this beauty.
Have a great weekend...
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
I went out bass fishing a few days ago and got skunked. That was a big disappointment since I had some big old bass flies I tied up using a new batch of Clear Cure Glue I had received in the mail. Dreaming of big bass like this one, I had sat down and tied up a good dozen heavy swimmers and couldn't wait to test them out. Unfortunately I only had a limited time and the day turned out to be cold and breezy. After giving it the ol' college try for three hours, I packed it in and resigned myself to to the fact that the fish just were not going to bite my beautiful flies.
Am I the only one that is starting to wish spring would come soon?
Anyway, with some more time to kill, I loaded the bass image into the computer and began toying with it. I have no real purpose for the image other than I was just board.
Friday, November 23, 2012
Jumping on the after Turkey Day band wagon of cyber sales, I have caved in and had my art put on greeting cards. I have received a number of requests for this but until now thought the cost out weighed the benefit. Truth be told it still does but I have decided to offer a limited quantity of these cards to readers at the cost I had to have them printed. Right now I am offering only SIX sets of these cards for sale at the low rate of $13.50 per pack + FREE SHIPPING. That's a price equal to or below any card you'll get at a Hallmark store.
When painting this fish it hit me that the deep colors of greens, reds, and white (snow like) tipped fins of the Brookie was the perfect colored fish for the holidays. Wrap a wreath around its neck and you have a trout (Char) that screams Christmas so why not put him on a card.
You can purchase a set of these cards by EMAILING ME HERE. Each set is $13.50 (FREE SHIPPING) and I will email you a PayPal invoice which can be paid via paypal account or ANY major credit card. As I said before, Quantities are VERY limited so don't delay. Once they are gone you will be out of luck.
For those that would like a 8x10 matted PRINT of this painting, shoot me an email and I will send you out a paypal invoice at the cost listed on my BUY A PRINT page. Hopefully I will get some time to actually list this painting on that page but until then...
And finally, for the ones interested in purchasing the ORIGINAL painting, it is still available! I have set the price at $130 - a real steal for any original piece of art. Truth be told, I would love to hang this on my own wall but if I put any more fish in my house I think my wife will go nuts. Shoot me an email if you are interested. This baby would be a perfect present for yourself... or the fisherman/woman in your life.
Let the holiday madness begin!
Somehow she managed to cover the spectrum of flies as well. Roughly from top to bottom - A Popsicle, a Blacknose Dace, the salt water Crab (Center), the Drake Edison Tiger (top right), The Telico, a Red and White Bass Hair Bug, and finally Lefty's Bug. I truly am a proud papa.
I hope you all had a great turkey day and may you all enjoy the rest of the long weekend.
Friday, November 16, 2012
I absolutely LOVE the look of these beauties. The brook trout is one of the most brilliant and varied of nearly all the char species.
- the scientific name of the Brook Trout - is not actually a trout. A member of the Salmon Family, the Brookie is a close relative to other char species like the Lake and Bull Trout, the Arctic Char, and the Dolly Varden. I believe the 'fontinalis' in its name indicates that that unlike other members of this family, the Brook Trout resides mostly in cool spring fed streams which is yet another reason I love this fish. What better place to hunt a beautiful fish than in a beautiful remote habitat?
To paint this fish I start off like I normally do, with a detailed drawing. I sketch this out very lightly because I don't want the pencil marks to show through the paint and if I want to erase them later, it is much easier to get rid of a light pencil mark then a thick black one.
Once the blueprint is laid out I start to put down the color. Layer by layer I build up color, careful to blend the right mixes of dark and light pigment. Of course the photos are not that great since they are with my cell phone camera - and the script below the fish is just a later addition not on the original- but you get the idea. I could go on about the process but you don't want to hear about that. You just want to look at a great looking fish.
Have a great weekend.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
However, when that desire to have fresh caught trout hits I do not raid the native streams. I instead head right for the put and take stream that is stocked in season nearly once a week. These fish rarely will survive the winter and are put there just for that purpose. I could get into the ethics behind it but that for another post. Today I am talking about supplying fish for pre-K children.
So anyway, as I was saying, my kids teacher wanted deer meat and fresh trout for an example of what the Native Americans ate. The feast was going to be the culmination of a long course on Native American Indians and Eskimos and she wanted me to supply the food. The deer meat was not a problem since I had a freezer full of it and the trout... well what better excuse is there to go fishing.
I am never one to miss an opportunity to educate the kids so I asked them to pull up a chair and watch me clean then. Eagerly they watch as I gutted and cleaned them, then I took it one step further and emptied all three trouts stomach contents for the kids to analyze. As we sifted through the first (and smallest trouts stomach contents) we began to see things the kids recognized like a millipede, an ant, and of course a ladybug.
I finished cleaning the fish and cleaned up the bug guts before my wife saw them on her kitchen counter. As for the kids special Indian feast, I am told that it was a mega hit. There is only about twelve kids in the class and they finished off three whole trout and a pound of deer meat. My boy was star and the only complaint I heard of was from one other little boy that was real angry that his daddy didn't fish or hunt.
The moral of the story, take your kids out into the great outdoors and teach them about the world in which we live. They will thank you for it for the rest of your life.