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2019 Wisconsin Taxidermy Association Masters Division Entry

One of four entries for Bird Zone Taxidermy this year was a fast flying, flipping Green Wing Teal that we brought home from the 2019 Wisconsin State Championship show. This piece took a Choice Award in the Masters Division which was pretty neat and a first for me. The actual art portion

of taxidermy is a never ending learning curve. We often hear people say, "She's the best, or He does the best work around". What does that mean really? It's all relative of course. As one slowly grows in skill, it simply opens new doors for even harder technical critique and challenges. Many start and get to a level that suits the commercial taxidermy industry just fine. Many of those have talent beyond some of the best competitors out there, just never really sign up to show it. I think that's pretty admirable. There are some great artists hiding in the shadows in every state, I assure you! I personally think that part of what drives many of us together several times per year, is some of us enjoy surrounding ourselves with those cut from the same cloth and enjoy not only the competition, but the ability to just "talk shop". Those that take on the same types of challenges artistically, technically and even financially. Many of those are folks that continue to grow and dig deeper, which is not easy or cheap, but they do it anyways. That all being said, let me tell you that this is a fun crowd to hang with ... pure and simple. I am fairly new to all of this and hardly compare in skill to those around me at this show, but that's the best part! We are lucky to have a very dynamic and diverse group of talent at the Wisconsin Taxidermist Association. Most everyone is willing to help and share what they know to make you better. Even those at the top, share down. That is true character if you ask me. Iron sharpens iron.. and when you compete against the best... you feel the burn. But it burns good! What a great show with great folks! Humbling... it makes me want to study, study, study! Why the thousand words??? I guess we work hard on the pieces we bring, the relationships we build... show up, time flies and your home. It's almost as if... wait did I blink???

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