Monday, December 27, 2010

Dewar's White Label

Watercolor on coldpress 9"x12"

As a follow up to yesterday's Grey Goose post, I thought I'd pay tribute to all of the "brown" lovers out there with the classic Dewar's Bottle.  The Dewar's White Label is a basic Blended Scotch Whiskey.  Founded in 1846, the Dewar's brand became famous world wide.

History tells us thaAndrew Carnegie sent a barrel of Dewar's Whisky to President Benjamin Harrison in 1891. The President was criticized by the press for supporting a foreign brand and not a domestic bourbon, but this ended up doing wonders for Dewar's advertising as orders from all over the United States began to pour in for Dewar's Whisky. A quote from Tommy Dewar at the time reads, "it was the very best advertisement I ever had, and certainly the cheapest...inquiries and orders flowed to us from all parts of the states.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Grey Goose

Grey Goose

Watercolor on cold press 9"x12"


I had to hold off on a few posts recently, because the Christmas surprise would have been ruined for a few people. This Grey Goose bottle is a fitting subject for today's overcast day. As I sat eating breakfast I saw hundreds of Canadian Geese flying overhead on their way to a warmer climate...if that exists in the US right now? I think it's freezing in Florida and we here in PA are expecting a few feet. Well the good news is, this spirit doesn't freeze. In fact, you will usually find this bottle in the freezer waiting patiently for such a cold day.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and is anticipating a fantastic New Year celebration for the ringing in of 2011. I'm sure Grey Goose will be the drink of many on New Years Eve.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Ausable Salmon Bomb

The Ausable Salmon Bomb is a sweet looking attractor fly that I found on the Ruff Waters Fly Fishing Blog. 

Watercolor on 9" x 12" Coldpress paper
I haven't fished the Ausable, but it will be crossed off my list some day for sure. This fly was not easy to paint...took me a few evenings and many beers and a bottle of red...oh and some whiskey too. I assume tying it is no easy task either. The plan according to Ruff Water's blog is to hit the Lake Champlain tributaries with this beautiful Salmon Fly. I'm sure there is a nice chill to the air up there right now...and those fish are hungry!

Take a look at the Ruff Waters Fly Shop to see a good selection of Adirondack Fly gear as well as a nice Ausable River Watershed guide service.  If you'd like to see this fly directly, check out the Ruff Waters Blog I'm always on the lookout for more interesting, eye catching subjects...if you have ideas "swing them" my way.

Friday, December 3, 2010

The Mighty Snook

A good friend relocated down south and has promised to bring me Snook fishing some day.  So, I've done my research and am looking forward to the opportunity.  Here is my attempt at capturing the Snook on paper.  Another warm water fish that "tricky" to catch.  Not only can they be hard to catch...specifically on the fly because they like to go deep, but these suckers can grow up to 47".  If your calculator is broken, that's almost 4 FEET LONG....damn!

The Fly Rod might not always be the ideal weapon of choice to bring these guys in as the recommended tackle is a 9- to 11-weight rod, with 40- to 50-pound-test tippets. Either way you catch them, the make for a nice meal and I think a great painting subject, racing stripe and all!

Watercolor on Cold Press 9"x 12"

For a more in depth description of the habits of the Snook, take a look here at Florida Sports Man

Monday, November 29, 2010

Cyber Monday at StridArt


Just a friendly reminder that StridArt is open for business this holiday season!  Why not surprise your Dad, Husband, Wife, or someone special with a very unique gift this Christmas. 

Give a call or send an email to inquire about a painting, print, or a commission idea!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving Muddler

Happy Thanksgiving Week!  I thought I'd start this week off with a nice Muddler Minnow Fly.  Brown seems to be a very "thanksgiving-ish" color to me.  I have also included the actual fly that was the model for this painting.  The fly was given to me by my wife, as she felt it was a beautiful fly...agreed.  Looking forward to some Thanksgiving family time this week. 

Water color on 9"x12" cold press

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Permit In Light

The Permit, Trachinotus falcatus is a fish found in the shallow, tropical waters of the Atlantic...or the fly fisherman's southern destination..."The Flats".  It is one of the most difficult fish to catch, but worth the I'm told.  The Greek origins of the name Trachinotus falcatus mean "Rough Back" and "Armed with Scythes".  A reference to the sharp dorsal fin that occasionally protrudes out of the water.
Water Color on Cold Press 9"x12"

I thought this would be a nice painting to get people thinking about the warm weather destinations they have planned for the upcoming winter chill up north. (Also would make a nice Christmas present.)  I know I've been thinking about it as evidence of my painting subject!  Here is a link to a guide service called Tropic Bay that charters trips to St. Martins Reef off of the central west coast of Florida and the Keys.  I'll try to keep some warm weather subjects coming your way to let you have a nice daydream.  Now, close your eyes and queue the Bob Marley tune Trench Town Rock!

Who has tropical fishing plans this winter?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Two of Hearts - River Runt

The Two of  Hearts is a the lovers card.  I chose this subject with some inspiration from a deck of playing cards given to me by a friend.  The Deck includes old school fishing lures and spinners.  I thought this one paints an interesting idea.  The 2 hearts of lovers...the two incredibly sharp tri-hooks...perhaps waiting hook each heart together.  What do you think it signifies? 

The River Runt c. 1929. 

Here is a great website that has an unbelievable collection of old lures, including the River Runt: Old Fishing Lure

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Jim Warner - Gray Winni Smelt

I opened some mail last night to find a nice early Christmas present from the one and only Jim Warner.  Jim is a legendary Fly Tier who resides in Melvin Village on Lake Winnipesaukee in NH.  I spent my summers as a child on that lake and have sweet memories of the place.  The gift I received from Jim last night included 2 beautifully hand tied Streamers and a note describing Jim's efforts to reach out to all of his friends on his website STREAMER LIST with a few flies on his list.  Thanks Jim!  And you'll see this paining in the mail shortly.

And here is the Fly Tied by Jim Warner:

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ortlieb's Beer

Ortlieb's Beer - Brewers By Birth Since 1869

Ortlieb's Beer has a long history, specifically in my family.  My Son's Middle Name is Ortlieb.
Here is a great article that dives into the history of the Ortlieb Family and the history of the Beer: Ortlieb's History . If you know Ortlieb's and have a story please submit a comment to me.  TRY JOE'S BEER!

Water Color on Cold Press.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Knob Creek

Anyone ever go fishing in Knob Creek?  I wonder if the Tyler Legg from Tar Heel Fly Fishing knows anything about the fish in Knob Creek?
I love this 9 year Bourbon.  It is delicious.  I'm typically more of a single malt guy, but when bourbon is poured, this one is at the top of my list.  (Update - 9.20.10 - Had diner Saturday night at Belrose 333 in Radnor, PA.  Was thinking about a tasty drink to unwind my body and had a Manhattan with Knob Creek.  It was the perfect compliment to my Cesar salad and rare cheeseburger!)

8" x 5.5" Watercolor on cold press 140 lbs paper.
Visit their site...has some cool facts.  Did you know that Winston Churchill's mother invented the Manhattan?
Knob Creek

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Tungsten Hot Wire Prince Nymph

It's been a few weeks since my last upload.  Had trouble getting any time to sit and focus on a painting.  This Prince Nymph was a fun one to paint.  I've used this pattern a number of times with some great outcomes.  I recently used in in some local PA Waters. 

Watercolor - "Tungsten Hot Wire Prince Nymph" 140 lb cold press paper.
Found the model on River Bum.  Great website with tons of great Fly Fishing gear and Tackle....check it out here:

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Blue Cheek Trout

This Brown Trout has some nice features.  I wanted to deepen the feel of the spawning colors and provide a substantial backround to strengthen the overall look of of this girthy beauty.  I really enjoyed stepping a little more outside of my typical style.  Gradually I will let go a little further. 

5.5" x 8"  Water Color on cold press 140 lb. 
See if you can guess where I found the model for this Trout.  Here's a of my Favorite Blogs...and there hasn't been a post in a long time...i'll reveal in a few weeks once there have been a few stabs where she came from.
Can't wait to get this's going to look legit!
By the way...she's for sale...just shoot me an email.


Monday, August 23, 2010

Trophy Striper - On the Fly

A beautiful 22 lbs Striped Bass caught by my good friend on a blue and white clouser fly.  Let's call this beauty "The Lipper".  I thought it would be nice to give this Striper a "trophy mount" look. 

5.5" x 8" Water Color on 140 Lbs Cold Press.

Here is the actual Striped Bass and the Angler "The Lipper" in his glory.  Well done my man! 

And the framed work :


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Red White Blue Streamer

A little late for the 4th of July, but I was inspired to capture this.  I found this fly on The Daily Fly Paper can check the link in my faves.  I added a little of my own character to the fly, but the essence is the same.  I was challenged by my father and my sister to come up with something Red White and Blue..and I think this fits the bill.  What kind of fish are striking this streamer?

God Bless America!

5.5" x 8" Water Color on 140 lb. Cold Press.  I'll be getting this framed shortly and will post.

Newly Framed:

Sunday, August 15, 2010

My Garden Peppers

So, the garden is slowly coming to an end for the season.  Sad to say that a critter has figured out that my tomatoes are pretty amazing...nicely paired with trout, salmon, and other fish caught on the fly rod.  Not quite sure what type of animal we've got stalking my veggies, but there is word of a fox in the neighborhood.  The squirrels seem to be quite brazen as well and could be the culprits.  I need to camp out some night with my headlamp and slingshot!  Here is my ode to the garden for the summer of 2010.  If only the critters would have tried to taste these first, I'm sure they would have run for the hills.

Water Color on 5.5" x 8" cold press paper. 
Yes...these suckers are HOT.

Brook Trout Streamer

This Brook Trout Streamer was fun to paint.  The gold, wrap around, tincil like spiral really comes out and seems to shine.  I love the pattern...should catch some nice phat trout. 

Water Color 5.5" x 8" on 140 Cold Press Paper
This Brook Trout Streamer is a beauty.  Idea taken from the fly tying of Lew Oatman.  The actual fly can be seen here: Lew Oatman

NEWLY FRAMED...this thing looks so sweet in the frame:

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sparkle Streamer

5.5" x 8" water color of Streamer Fly on 140 lb paper.
Thought I'd go a little outside the box and add some movement to this fly, considering thats how the fish like to see it...on the move.  So is this Fly replecating a minow?  Tell me what you think?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Hendrick's with Cucumber

This 88 proof, small batch Gin is imported from Ayrshire Scotland, where we typically find our single malts.  I was turned onto this image by a close friend who wanted to commision me to paint the bottle.  After doing my due diligence from the reviews, I can say that this is a very unique spirit that deserves attention.  Not your typical Gin, Hendricks is infused with essence of cucumber and rose petals that provide a subtle juniper aroma and "velvety" flavor.

The bottle itself is reminiscent of an old medicine bottle one would find back in the 20's.  That is appropriate when considering the history of Gin itself.  In early 17th century Holland it was produced as a medicine and sold in chemist shops to treat stomach ailments, gout and gallstones. British soldiers fighting in the Low Countries during the 30 Years' War were given 'Dutch Courage' during the long battles in the damp weather through the warming properties of gin. Eventually they started bringing it back home with them.  I will be bringing some home with me on my next visit to the "apothecary".

5.5" x 8" Water Color on Cold Press Paper.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

OFF THE GRID - The Trailer

Currently touring on the Fly Fishing Film Tour, "Off the Grid" looks like a must see.  Here is the description from the producers:

"When we set out in the spring of 2009 to film our new movie, Off the Grid, we decided to look for people, places, hatches and fish outside the norm. We started out west, chasing hatches and trout in Wyoming, Colorado, Idaho and Montana. From there we traveled north to Southeast Alaska and BC. We made a brief stop in the Midwest, then completed our filming on the remote flats in Mexico. On behalf of our entire crew, we are proud to present a unique cut created for the 2010 fly fishing film tour, a sneak peak at the new film... Off the Grid. We hope you enjoy the show!"

Couldn't figure out how to stop the "Auto Play" on this here's the link to it: Off The Grid - Vid Here

Thursday, July 8, 2010

"Cover Model" Brown Trout - Progressive Start to Finish

I wanted to once again show the different stages of my painting process.  Below, you will see how my fish comes to life through the painting.  From top to bottom you can see where I begin on this Brown Trout from the base layer to the finishing detail.  The reason she is called the "Cover Model" is she is loosley based upon the beautiful Brown Trout on the cover of "Fly Rod & Reel" magaznie's Spring 2010 issue.

Water Color on 140 lb cold press - 5.5" x 8"                                          

Stage 1 - The Sketch, outline, and base colors.

Stage 2 - The body formation, eye set up and more base layer.

Stage 3 - Bringing the layer effect to the spots and adding depth and dimention.

Brand New Frame for this beauty:

The Glenlivet

The Glenlevit 18 year Single Malt Whisky from Speyside Scotland is a favorite in the collection.  Extreamly smooth, not to be mixed with anything but a fine glass in my opinion.  It has a sweet floral fragrance, is distilled twice in copper stills and then aged in oak casks for 18 years. It has a very sophisticated smooth feel and I thought was worthy as a subject for a painting.  My current bottle was a gift from a close friend...the good news...he doesnt like whiskey, he's a burbon drinker.  I get this all to myself.
Water Color on 140lb cold press 5.5" x 8"

Wide Open Brookie with Skunk

The Wide Open Brookie was also a previous painting that I had shared on my blog, but was never satisfied with the finished product.  I have recently added a green butt skunk to the mouth of the fish to complete with what I feel is the finishing touch.  She was hungry and deserved more.  Have you ever caught a Brook Trout with a red butt skunk? 
Water Color on 140 lb Cold Press - 15" x 22"

Cutty Finale

This Cut Throat was a difficult painting for me.  I featured her as a series back in May with pictures taken throughout the painting process.  I would stare at the painting...walk around it, and stare some more before I would go back in.  You can see the previous post with the 5 different stages here: .

Water Color On Cold Press 140lb - 15" x 22"

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

More "Frontier" Art

In Keeping with me theme of the Bulleit "Frontier" are two pieces of art from my past:
                                                          Fence Mending

The Cowboy mending a fence in winter.  Acrylic on masonite board 54" x 30".  This painting is from 1995 and currently hangs in a private collection.  I was inspired by a recent trip to the west.  What was it really like to be a cowboy in the early days of the frontier?  I know one thing...not easy.  The interesting thing is the fact that this image could be from 1910 or 2010.  The Cowboys of the west are still around and as tough a breed as you can find.  What do you think is this guys story?  Does he fly fish?  If he does, he's not practicing catch and release...he's cooking up some trout on a an iron skillet.  Does he drink whiskey?  Probably.  Is he a loaner? Thoughts?

                                                            Sad Cow

The Sad Cow is a Pastel on Paper 30" x 24" hanging in a private collection, circa 1999. 

FishyKid Bio:

I am very excited to announce my bio listed as one of the contributing artists on the website...check it out and aslo look around the FishyKid's got some great contests!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Bite The Bulleit

This is one of my favorite...Bulleit Bourbon - Frontier Whiskey.  My first encounter with the Bulleit was on the Ashtabula River on the border of PA and Ohio hunting down Steelhead in November of 2007.  I didn't catch many Steelhead but enjoyed some of the warmth created by this finely crafted bourbon.  I would have to say I like to enjoy the Bulleit "neat" either from a highball or right out of this beautiful bottle.  The Bottle really is reminiscent of the old frontier and when you grab one, you feel like you are stepping back in time.  Be sure to hook yourself up on your next trip to your favorite river, especially when the chill returns to the air.  The Bulleit will comfort you and provide you warmth as if you were heading out into the frontier. 

The Painting is 5.5" x 8" Water Color on Cold Press Paper.  I received such a great response from the "Dry Fly" Whiskey bottle, that I thought the Bulleit would make a great subject.  I am very fond of the turnout of this painting. 

Tight Lines and Bottoms Up!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Valley Creek Brown Trout

Water Color 5.5" x 8" on cold press.  Naitive Brown Trout I caught on Valley Creek in Valley Forge PA.  This was a spectacular fish at aproximatley 13".   She hit my elk hair caddis dry hard and fought the good fight.  So great to catch these native browns in Valley Forge.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

The "Big One" for Patrick - Birthday Fish

Custom Water Color on Cold Press.  5.5" x 8".  Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout.  This painting was a custom birthday present for Patrick, a future Angler for sure.  Patrick turns one year old today!  Happy Birthday little man!

Red Butt High Voltage Midge!

Thought this was a cool pattern.  Water Color on Paper.  5.5"x 8".
Found on's the link:

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Bows & Browns on the Lackawaxen

Caught this nice strong Rainbow on the Upper West Branch of the Lackawaxen in PA.  This fish was torpedoed out of the water 3 times while I was bringing her in...about 3 to 4 feet out of the water!

A nice Brownie caught by my buddy minutes earlier.

Trying to take advantage of the sunlight...tying on a small elk hair caddis

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Salmon Run - Water Color Painting by my Good Friend Jennifer Kolmer

10" x 16" Water Color Painting by my good freind Jennifer Kolmer.  Jennifer is an acomplished painter with many works hanging in private galleries throught the north east.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Yellow Sally 6

4" x 6" This Water Color painting is a Dry Fly called the Yellow Sally 6 inspired by the fly tying of Whiskey Creek.  The "Yellow Sally Fly Pattern, tied on a Tiemco 101BL, size 14. Tied like a yellow elk hair caddis, but with a red foam underbody/egg sac" an update, here is a great fly tying video on MidCurrent by Michael Yelton.  Michael ties another version of the Yellow Sally:

Buy This Painting on PayPal:
Price : $100 USD

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Guitar Player - Robert Johnson

This is an older pastel drawing that I pulled out of hiding.  The piece hangs in a private collection in Devon, PA.  Robert Leroy Johnson is the most influential Delta Blues Artist impacting all of the blues we listen to today.  So, he sang the blues back then in the Missisipi Delta...imagine how blue he would be now if he knew about BP?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Dry Fly Whiskey - Washington Wheat!

I was having a few slugs of whiskey watching the Flyers game and thought this might make a nice subject..the colors are oh so "Flyers" :

Water Color on heavy weight paper - 5.5" x 8.5"
I need to pick up a bottle of they sell this in PA?
Check out thier cool website also


Daily Fly Paper Blog Features Bead Head Nymph

Fly Tyer featured some of my works on his site...please pay him a visit.  His site is fantastic: