Tag Archives: pencil

NEW Owl – Ying Yang Shirt on Amazon!

Check out my latest shirt design, a pencil drawing featuring two of our most iconic raptors, the Snowy Owl and Great-horned Owl! Available now through Amazon.com (USA).
AMAZON – Ying Yang Owl Shirt

Spawning Bull Trout and Kokanee

Fall is dominated by hues of orange and red. From the fiery mountain sides to the blue streams dotted with red, fall is a time of death and recreation. As the leaves change, so do the fish and here in the mountains, this means spawning trout and salmon.

Although some species of trout spawn in the spring, Char spawn in the fall. The fluvial populations migrate upstream to their spawning creeks from the lakes they call home. During this feat, bull trout change from their silver non-breeding colours to their vibrant breeding colours. This transformation results in crimson bellies highlighted with white edged fins.

At the same time, Kokanee Salmon too migrate into the creeks to spawn, undergoing a similar transformation. Normally a silver fish, Kokanee transform into vibrant crimson accented with green heads and white lower jaws. Unlike the Bull Trout which return to the lake after spawning, Kokanee Salmon, like all Pacific Salmon species, die after spawning.

At all times of the year, Bull Trout feast on Kokanee Salmon. From creek mouth ambushes on new Kokanee fry, to open water assaults, to gauntlets of hungry mouths as the Kokanee try to travel upstream to spawn, the cat and mouse game is constant. Co-dependant species, the Bull Trout keep the Kokanee numbers in check, while the Kokanee allow the Bulls to get to truly impressive sizes. Sadly, in much of their range, populations are declining due to habitat loss especially in their native spawning creeks, as well as competition from other species that have been introduced.

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This piece meant a lot to me, going back to my roots of how I started with fish art. Inspired by such artists as Joseph Tomelleri, Flick Ford, and Paul Vecsei, I loved how detailed and precise their works were. Being detail obsessed myself, I emulated my style after theirs. As years went on, I ventured away from the illustration style, invoking a much more action packed style. Despite my artist evolution, I have always been a huge fan of my idols’ work and this piece signifies that respect for them and their talent.

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To this day, after fishing in some of the most incredible waters in Canada for so many amazing native species, I still hold Bull Trout in the highest regard. I have so much respect for these fish and the stunning, pristine waters that they inhabit. Since moving to BC, it has been amazing to be able to chase these piscivores locally and see them in their home waters. There’s nothing more exhilarating having a big bull swipe at your fly seemingly out of nowhere. Their appetite is impressive and there is almost no fly too big to toss for them. I’ll normally use a heavily weighted 8-12″ fly that I’ll swing thru the current.

Being ambush predators, Bulls almost always bite best in the early hours or just as the sun starts going down. Casting at midday is usually futile. Bull Trout will simply hold in a seam and wait for dusk. During these times, a perfectly drifted stonefly nymph may entice them for a midday snack, but typically they won’t even react. I have seen however, these sedentary Bulls spark up when a hooked Cutthroat is struggling on the end of your line. Like a shark smelling blood in the water, you can see the body language instantly change and watch them go into hunting mode.

Here in Golden, BC, September marks the Kokanee Salmon spawning migration, and one of the best times of the year to fish for Bull Trout. As the bright red little salmon begin their migration, the Bull Trout gorge on the hordes of easy meals. At this time of year, Bull Trout can get to blimp status as they stuff themselves with as many little salmon as they can.

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Yellowtail Kingfish Skeleton

Hard-fighting, the Yellowtail is part of the Amberjack family. Known for their amazing table fair, they are excellent as sashimi as well as grilled. There are a couple different subspecies of Yellowtail, this one being the Southern locality found off the coasts of Australia.

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Circling Trout Series

A new series that is under way is the Circling Trout Series. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while. Inspired by both tattoo art of koi fishes and a painting done by the extremely talented Yusniel Santos, I finally took the time to sketch out a concept and pose I liked.

Starting with the three most popular, Brook/Brown/Rainbow, and adding more to the series as time progresses and allows. These are all done in watercolour pencils with a Copic marker base coat. The first piece, the Brown Trout, was the test piece to try out using the marker background and see how it would work out. This method, which I had never heard of done before, works amazing! I sketched out the general layout and then filled it in with the marker. After I let it thoroughly dry, I begin adding in the watercolour pencils, layer after layer, building up the depth and colour richness. The marker gives a perfect neutral grey background in which I can build from that helps make the colours pop better than your typical white paper background.

Decals are coming very soon for this series and the Atlantic Salmon and Steelhead pieces are underway.

Circling Trout Promo

 

Bad to the Bone – Bream

Was a fun challenge trying to make a Bream look badass. Wasn’t easy but in the end, it haunts my nightmares. =P

bream skeleton promo

All Rights Reserved – Copyright Nick Laferriere – 2015

www.fishwreck.com.au

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Peacock Bass Commissioned Piece

This is a commissioned piece I did for Jeff Cardwell depicting a Peacock Bass launching a surprise attack on a pair of Chalceus. Was a fun piece and the largest fine art piece I’ve done to date. 16 x 20″ on 20 x 24″ watercolour paper. Original Watercolor Pencil artwork by Nick Laferriere

For prints, click the picture below.Final Piece Peacock Bass prints