~my “fish whisperer” series, the Brown Trout~

“Salmo trutta”

~ 42″ hand carved & hand painted ~

 ~my etsy site where this series is listed~

this is a carving I made imitating a beautiful brown trout I caught last fall in Clear Creek Colorado…the spawn was going on in full…and there were lots of fish moving their way back up the freestone creek to the waters they were born.I called him “Mr. Blacktail”, since he had exceptionally dark fins compared to the other male browns in the area…



this fish was moving and herding fish around a feeding seem like a bull elk with his harem! I was sight nymphing with a black stone fly and cheesman emerger dropper w/o an indicator in some fairly shallow water…I spotted this fish and worked the seem for almost an hour trying to get this beauty…finally he took the stone fly and it was on…what an incredible fish and experience!

the ancestors of the brown trout we have here in North America originally came from Germany and Scotland in the 1800’s…now they are a mainstay almost everywhere…and probably my favorite, and also the species I am most experienced with…having pursued them for close to 50 years!


~art imitates life…there is only one artist that can produce this!~

anyone who has experienced these fish know how their natural camouflage is nothing less than incredible….the multiple layers and colors of spot when viewed together make for some a practical , yet incredibly beautiful presence!


when viewed from above where natural predators like hawks and eagles roam the colors are made demure by a darkened layer…I have tried to emulate this myself in this carving as close as possible…but at the same time the radical and bright colors visible by the other fish as a sign of excitement are still to be seen…


~one of the fish I used as a pattern for this painted carving~

this carving is 42 inches long and 4 & 1/2″ thick…a bit longer in real life than the fish I patterned which was just under 23 inches in length…I carve these to be viewed from any angle…all sides, top, bottom etc…anywhere it can be seen it is finished!…my goal with all my carvings is to make something realistic…and still hold the feeling of a hand made object, made with natural materials…wood grain, small tool marks, slight imperfections that prove human hands had something to do with this…


my carvings are done 100% by hand using the most basic sculptors tools…from blocks of pine that are seasoned to a perfect moisture level…all painting is done by hand as well, no stencils or aids as used by some…my calipers are the fingers on my hands…my measuring tool is my eyes!…and the eyes are made by myself using several layers of gold leaf and pigmented paints coated again with several layers of clear epoxy to give a very realistic look…no factory made imitations …that would not accomplish for me my goal of a hand work…



~attempting to make a lifelike eye…the first layer of gold leaf over a domed epoxy layer…next the shades of black and then more domed layers…a lot of work…but following my desire to keep these as organic as I can  means making everything possible~

~I am doing only 20 carvings of each species, signed and numbered~


this trout was a very, very special catch…caught with one of my own custom made bamboo fly rods( a “RainMaker” series 7 &1/2′ 4 weight.) and a black stone fly hand tied for the occasion…there was a few moments that our worlds connected while he was in my net…and maybe 45 seconds later he was released to continue his saga no worse for the wear…I am a stickler on this matter!

I can carve this species exactly like this clear creek spawner… or if you have a special picture you would like me to use for reference I can easily do that too…


this artwork is meant to be hung from a ceiling, porch or atop a mantle on a  fireplace…I provide all the necessary hardware to do this…if you have a special situation I will be glad to accommodate that as well…just contact me.


what I offer here is an alternative for some that want a replica or art work of a special fish with a more eco-friendly impact…not to mention the fact that its entirely done by hand …the amount of glue, paint etc in one of my finished carvings would fill a coffee cup …less than 6 ounces…whereas one of the fiberglass molded products a few gallons…and in a fish this size probably 3-4+ gallons…that’s a lot of toxic stuff!


My carvings are my interpretation of creatures I love so much…they are not in the category of “scientific carving”, which is where every scale, fin, where every minute detail is measured with a micrometer…and judged for being incredibly perfect in every way…but no where near “kitsch” either…appearing quite lifelike from every angle.


I also carve this species in a three sided version made especially for a wall mount…it still has all the same details, and is aprox. 3 inches thick, but has only one each of the pelvic and pectoral fins as opposed to the pair on the full carving.just contact me if you are interested in that…

I can also ship these to international customers, just contact me so I can research the specifics to you location…


~I would love to carve and paint one especially for you…wm~

~contact me if you have a special fish not on my list in this series…

if it swims I can carve it!

I also carve on special order extra large size trout and salmon…5-6 feet in length and 12″ wide…I do these for restaurants and fly shops etc…just contact me…

ok_2 copy