Artwork in Gray’s Sporting Journal – Nov/Dec 2011

A few days ago, I got a nice surprise in the mail. I opened the recent issue of Gray’s Sporting Journal and saw one of my paintings on page 49. It’s always a pleasure working with Wayne Knight, the magazine’s art director, and I’ve been fortunate to have been included in around ten issues over the past decade. The writing is always great so it’s an honor having the work associated with the articles and printed in such a beautifully crafted publication.

The painting was created a few years ago in the spring after I went down to the stream below my house. I took some underwater pictures of a few steelhead below the falls. There was a beautiful stillness under the current. The painting is now hanging in the studio. It will be nice to have this reproduction sitting next to it. Who knows… it might be of interest to a few collectors.

The kids hit the Canadaway in search of steelhead!

This past weekend, Sunday, October 30th, S.A.R.E.P. Youth Fly Fishing Program had their first outing in search of steelhead. The group included the young students, their parents, a few community members and a group of dedicated mentors. The group had spent the last few weeks tying flies in preparation for this trip.


After the group was outfitted with waders, boots, rods and reels, individual casting lessons  began on the lawn.

A few minutes later, the students were on the water using their new skills.

Jimbo, one of our mentors for the past decade, moved on to work with another young student as sun started to move closer to the horizon.

On another beat of the stream, Mike, another mentor, worked with a couple new students as the looked at steelhead moving upstream.

He looked on as he gave casting instructions from the bank.

Sue, one of our newest mentors and mother of one of the students, jumped at the opportunity to help with the casting instructions.

She got a lot of practice untangling lines from trees and rods as her daughter looked on with amusement.

I  gave a couple lessons on tying an improved clinch knot as we attached on one of their newly tied flies.

Along the way we saw one of the hundreds of willow trees we have planted over the past 14 years. It was nice to see them do well and adhered tightly to the banks.

Overall,  we had a wonderful fall day on our local stream as we cast to beautiful steelhead as they moved through the pools. I know many will be haunted by the long shadows and dream about these chrome beauties as I have been for many years.

Next Monday we return to the Fredonia Central Middle School to our weekly fly tying sessions where we will tie up some streamers in preparation for our next trip.

We are ready for our next trip!



New work from studio: Chautauqua County Streams, New York – Part III

Here is the fifth out of six paintings that I am planning to exhibit on March 2-30, 2012 at the Octagon Gallery in the Patterson Library in Westfield, New York.

This is the painting of Laona Falls located in the village of Laona, New York on Canadaway Creek. This is as far upstream as migrating steelhead from Lake Erie can reach although there are rumors that in very high waters they can move above these falls. Laona and its falls inspired Spiritualist  groups since the mid-19th century and the American composer Alan Hovhaness who composed two works inspired by the hamlet: Laona (for piano) and Dawn at Laona, Op. 153 (cantata for low voice and piano).

The images for the painting were taken in August 2011 during a family trip to the falls to retreat from the day’s heat. We munched on wild blackberries on the path back to the car.