Fly Tying Table Top, 30”x30”, Stained Butcher Block with routed forms

I was given a butcher block piece from a kitchen remodel. Reacting to the wood grain I saw the rocks from Boulder canyon in Colorado and routed out a drawing I did. Each rock is a compartment for flies or fly tying materials.

Series of “Tear Aways” 8” x 10”. Construction paper.

I was looking for a new way to visually express the river, streams and drainages that I am drawn to, that doesn’t rely on line at all, but still “takes away”
or tries to simplify rather than add. I was inspired by Henri Matisse’s Cutouts and the japanese art
of cutting paper, “Mon Kiri”. The ability to bring paper, some glue and a pencil on the trail and
just play...tearing away at a piece of paper like water eroding the rock or like the way leaves fall and overlap on the ground.

Ongoing series of wood & paper cutout explorations.

Tested out photo/object ideas for commissioned illustration project. Traveled to one of my favorite trout streams to document these in context.

Drawings in marker with charcoal shading. 10”x10”.

Spot illustrations for The Stone by Peter Reese.

Giclée Prints mounted on birch plywood with gouache painted dots. 12”x19”.

Speckled Trout Prints

“ Where the water is clear and cold, bright colors can be seen. There is an advantage to this. Trout are territorial, and males and females aggressively defend feeding stations. They flash their colors in lateral and frontal threat displays, and if that doesn’t work to push off an intruder, they nip and chase each other to defend their position in a stream.

Color and pigment patterns seem to matter during fall spawning, too. The fins and bellies of brook trout, like the maple leaves above, turn orange in the fall. While shortened day length triggers spawning behavior, it’s the trout’s heightened color that brings on the aggression as males vie for the opportunity to be closest to an egg-laying female. The largest, most brightly colored males will most effectively fend off the peripheral males. 

Bright color can be a disadvantage, of course, especially to an animal that must be constantly wary of predation from above. So trout have evolved a two-toned skin. The bright threatening flash of their silvery sides – in rainbow trout the silver is superimposed by a brushwork of red – contrasts with a dark back, engraved with ornate markings called vermiculations. These speckled patterns break up reflected light, merging trout with the gravely substrate below. In moving water, trout are nearly invisible from above.”

From Tim Traver’s How the Trout Got Its Spots