Sunday, February 10, 2013

Whitlock et al

I went to Somerset to see the IF4 show two weeks ago. A few folks I know produced and starred in A Deliberate Life and seeing it was the purpose of the trip. There were also a couple of other notable films including Mark Crapo's short, The Beard Chronicles, Cast Alaska 2 - Sheebang by the folks at Cross Current, The Last Salmon Forest by Detonation Studios. I've heard my buddy Chris talk about fishing the Tongass in the past and now it is firmly on the short list. If you get a chance to see IF4, definitely see it.

The trip would have been worth it for IF4 alone but a stay overnight made a visit to the fly show a no brainer. Sam and I got there early as we had to be home by mid-afternoon. We wandered around a bit speaking with the fly tyers, buying some critical supplies and oggling the shiny objects of our desire.

I made several passes through Dave Whitlock's booth. I hadn't met Dave before but like you I'm familiar with his work through the articles in numerous magazines. His illustrations of bugs, fish, and habitat that are among the most recognizable in our sport.

Early in the day, Dave was nice enough to spend some time talking as he worked. We spoke about the business of art - illustration vs fine art , the business of writing - writing for the paycheck vs the soul,  and about being new to the game vs an old hand. It was very enjoyable and he was generous with his time.

Later Sam and I couldn't help but add a couple of prints to our collection and Emily and Dave were kind enough to donate a few prints for our upcoming TU banquet.

One of the things that I didn't count on was how much I enjoyed speaking with the vendors. Sure I was enamored with their wares, but there are a lot of fascinating folks in our sport and it was a good time just hanging out and chatting (and buying a few things, too). I suppose it's not much different from anything else in life, it's generally the people you meet that make the trip worth taking.




Gregg Heffner

Claes Johansson
Cork below Bamboo




  1. Steve, just wanted to say that I totally agree with your statements on there being some great folks in the world of fly fishing and all its parts that really make this sport even more unbelievable. Many years ago I had an opportunity to spend an evening visiting and talking with Dave Whitlock. Before we parted ways, Dave, generously gave me a couple of his wonderfully tied Bass flies. Great to see that he is still going strong. Thanks for sharing the show with us all.

  2. Hey Steve, thanks for posting this. I love my local fly fishing show, but I realize that I only get to meet up with western tiers for the most part. I sure would like to meet some of the stars from other parts of the country. Dave and Emily are an amazing couple aren't they?

    1. They sure are. They're either the nicest people in the sport or the craftiest marketers or both.

  3. Why do all his fish look like they're smiling?

    1. While one might think it's the depressed fish that get on the hook, it's really the goofy happy ones.