Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Greenback Cutthroat Trout

One of Americas true national treasures, the Greenback Cutthroat Trout was once thought to be extinct but after being rediscovered in some isolated streams around the 1950's, the Greenback is on its way to reclaiming much of its native habitat.
The Cutthroat is a beautiful trout and as any angle can attest, it is also a joy to hook into one.  The Greenback is just one segment of a variety of Cutthroat species that once dominated the American Rockies.
I love painting these beautiful fish and so it is not by chance that I chose this fish for my subject the other day.  Its bright colors and distinct red cheeks make it a fish just asking to have a portrait done.

Greenback Cut
Aprx size - 10x14in
Watercolor on paper
for sale

Check out new prints available at extremely affordable prices HERE on my Watercolor PRINTS PAGE.  The Cutthroat is not up yet but it will be soon.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

At the Desk Tying Trash Flies

  The other day I was looking over a few fly tying books at a book store and came across one called Fly Patterns by Fishing Guides.  With 200 flies used by guides all over the world I thought that this would be a great addition to my collection of interesting books on fly tying and promptly bought it.
   The first one that caught my attention was the Foam Emerger by Masamitsu Kasuya.  Just my speed - easy to tie and simple enough to work. Tied these up on a #16 scud hook.  Now I can't wait to try it out - I bet the Tenkara Sunfish will kill them!

From there I went into tying up a few flies I had to replenish my box.  The beetle has long been a favorite of mine so it is no wonder why I am always re-stocking them in my small fly box.  With the creeks and tiny mountain streams I go to searching out the brookies, the small terrestrials are always a viable option to tie.  A passing trout cant help to give these little guys a look.  The only problem I have had with them is when fishing them I find it hard to see them at distance.  They are usually tied in #14 or #16 sizes and with a black body, I usually just fish a rise in the area of where I think my fly is drifting.  To solve this problem I have began to add a little white nail polish to the back of these stellar bugs.
I first start off with a cut section closed cell foam wrapped to the back of the hook.  This builds a thick body for the fly and I find gives the beetle a realistic appearance. I also do not use black thread.  I tend to go to a deep purple 6/0 thread because if you look carefully at the underside of a small beetle you will notice that it is not a true black but a varying shades of deep colors that make it look to us as simply black.
I then tie in some ostrich hurls for the under body.  These are excellent to give the fly a little life as it sits on the water.  The fish sees them move and they cant help themselves.
And then finally I bring the foam forward and finish the fly off with a little of my wife's nail polish.  Its a great fly and one sure to get a few looks on a small stream or on the pond.  Not technically a Tenkara fly but it has the same result when fished as a top water Tenkara style.
Messing a bit more with the closed cell foam I whipped up a few quick wingless wasp patterns.  You can count numerous way this is not remotely like a wasp but will the fish be so discerning? I bet when they see this rushing past them on a drift they will rush it like a linebacker.  The four or five wasps I pulled from a trouts stomach last year tells me that they do dine on the stinging insects so I am betting that these will be a winner.  Thoughts?

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Orange Tenkara Kebari - Painting and Fly

I missed the Tenkara conference out west a week or so ago and much to my dismay I will unfortunately miss the Appalachian Tenkara Jam next weekend in North Carolina.  Thanks to a brutal work schedule, my fall fishing has been curbed as well as any hunting activities I had planned.
I may be missing all these great activities but it doesn't mean my mind isn't actively thinking about them so the other day I took a little time to release some of that pent up energy to sketch and tie up a few Tenkara fly.  This little Kebari style fly - painted with a bead and tied with a dubbing sack - sports the orange and yellows that brookies love.  More than any other color, I have found that brook trout seek and aggressively hit on an orange colored fly.  Even in a stream system where blacks, olives, and muddy brown bugs are the only colors of native food, the orange is the color that always hits.
  Whether you tie it with a glass or tungsten bead or go with a dubbing clutch, this fly is sure to please in any brook trout stream you visit.
  For those of you interested in owning this original Yellow Kebari painting, shoot me a message.  It will be well within your price range and will look good over your desk.
  Also take the time to visit the Appalachian Tenkara Anglers for info on the Jam happening on the 11th &12th. and suit up with a shirt at my shop HERE.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Life Rolls and A Little Brook Trout Watercolor To Relax

Small Brook Tout On Blue

My life has been so busy lately that when my wife asked when was the last time I had done a blog post I actually couldn't remember.  Of course that doesn't mean that I have been idle in the fishing or painting department.  Not only have I been wetting flies in search of lazy black bass but I have been working on a variety of painting projects including a collection of salt water species for a fund raising tournament in Tampa Bay.
  But for today I found a small amount of time to finish up a colorful Brook Trout on Blue watercolor.  As many know, the eastern bred brookie is one of my favorite fresh water species not only for its unbelievable colors but also for their aggressive takes and the remote hill streams in which they thrive.  Painting them is a way for me to remember their beauty and relax after a tough few days on the road for work.
Painted area 11x9in. - watercolor on paper
  This particular brook trout is modeled off a secluded native species I caught in the northern boarders of Greenville county in South Carolina.  The stream in which they live takes an effort to reach and I would bet sees not more that a few dedicated fisherman each year.  Choked by brush and countless ways to loose your flies, its native waters is the perfect habitat for the large amount of brook trout that call it home.  The fly I used all day was a simple black caddis in size 16 and for the brookies it was irresistible.
  This particular painting is available for purchase to the first art collector that contacts me.
  As for the other paintings that I have been working on, I will be posting the availability of these prints in the coming months on my site.  The Spanish Mackerel, Permit, and Snook are staples of the saltwater fishing community and these prints represent three of the top prizes for the boat crews in the Annual Tampa Bay BCN Gators Inshore Tournament.  If you fish the salt, keep a weathered eye out in the future for these.
  For the top prize in the tournament I have created a one of kind piece.
  This large painting is only available to the one person who hauls in the biggest fish of the day.  No prints are available there is no other way to have this original watercolor on your walls than to enter the tournament on October 10th 2014.
  If you would like to enter then click over to the registration site HERE quickly and get in on the great day of fishing.  Besides the paintings, there will be a whole lot of other prizes and swag for the participants.  So far I am told over 40 boat crews have signed up and it is shaping up to be a memorable and worthy day on the water.

  Besides the vast amount of paintings I have been doing, I have also managed to squeeze in a bit of hunting between the work load of my day job.  So far the deer are all safe and I am sure they are all laughing at me from their beds.  With any luck I will yet gather a bit of meat for the winter the old fashion way but I am not holding my breath.
  Besides the hunting I have also been able to wet a few flies in search for the lazy bass that are around this time of year.  Luckily me skills as a fly fisherman are much better than my hunting skills so I have managed to land quite a few nice fish.  Maybe soon I will be able to make the journey back to my trout waters.
  And of course, before I even think about heading to satisfy me needs to get out in nature I spend as much time as I can with my family.  Sometimes they come with me to hunt fish and sometimes as the rain washes out gullies it is just best if we settle down with a bit of Robert Earl Keen on the speakers and a little game of chess to pass the time.