Sunday, April 1, 2012

Summing up the Whitetail Deer & Turkey Expo...Alliance Building, Madison, WI

I've attended the expo..but this my first year with a booth.  Thousands and thousands of sportsmen, women and children.  Wonderful hearing all the comments, the interest in my sporting portraits.  Meeting sporting television celebrities, authors...great and legendary hunters.  Some awesome opportunities brewing...some national recognition among sportsmen and our outdoor heritage.

My son Jeremy was the catharsis to once more revive and take this past offering of mine as an artist off the shelf.  The last of this type of show were the deer classics of the 80's...and more humble beginnings by everyone.  My schpeel really, is I don't need another "job"...I already have my painting, my teaching...books, videos...but, my enjoyment as a sportsmen and the kindredness with those likeminded, it is a passion...a joy to paint that pure moment where all the planning, the years of effort, knowledge...all come together.  The smile displayed over one's game not one of arrogance as those hostile to hunting might suggest, nor gloating...but a deeper satisfaction and joy of a long anticipated hope finding its culmination.  A respect...for the game...the pursuit.

Here was my booth...and my son Jeremy working the booth.  At the start of the second day...just before doors opening, sharing with a friend and biologist for the Ruffed Grouse Society Gary Zimmer, having their booth right next to ours...

Here, yours truly...a bit tired admittedly, taking a moment from working on this painting of hunter Jeff Hendzel and a fine cougar taken this winter in Idaho...

Here is the finished painting, signed...a few touch ups.. 30"x 20" oil on linen...

...and...our first day, Jeremy and I were most excited to meet Lane Benoit, of the legendary Benoit family...of Vermont and Maine, the finest trackers of deer, stalkers and hunters there is...with many monster bucks to their credit. Won't get into details...but my son and I hold some expectation that we may well have opportunity in time to come to enjoy a hunt with this master!!!  And...what a hoot Lane is...greatest stories he tells...and funny!

In sum...what a grand time it was...and most memorable was doing this with my huntin' buddy, my son Jeremy. It doesn't really get better than this!

To those new friends, fellow sportsmen and women we met, it was truly an honor.  To the many that took a business card of mine and found themselves here, welcome!  If you have any questions, feel free to contact me...and I'll be glad to help you.  Look forward to perhaps working with you for your own sporting portrait.  My post that follows here explains the break down of my fees for portraits.  It was great meeting many of you!!!  Let's do it again...soon!

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