Today, I was perusing a book by Darrell Mulch called Reading Water, An Illustrated Guide to Hydrodynamics and the Fly (2001). The book has a lot to contemplate while presenting materials about the holding patterns of fish in various hydraulic scenarios. 


reading-water-illustrated-guide-hydrodynamics-fly-darrell-mulch-paperback-cover-artOn the very last page, a section entitled The Beginning, there’s a passage that I thought interesting: “However, in a store, flies are usually tied to either attract fish or fishermen. That is, they are made to look like a specific insect or they are made to appeal to the fishermen’s understanding of beauty. Ugly flies, though, are constructed to interact and relate to the characeristics of moving water to produce an animate behavior. The image they present to the fish is dynamic; it is seen as a cinema (a sequence of events), instead of a snapshot (a moment frozen in time).” 

The ‘Ugly Fly’ patterns in the book are scraggily, wavy patterns that move upon and under the water’s ‘roof’ as Mulch calls them. I like the Cinema (fluid movements) vs. the Snapshot (static) idea. I have long suggested the impressionistic pattern is preferable to the perfect replica pattern on many occasions. Rather than being my excuse for sloppy tying, perhaps Mulch has given me even another reason to tie my unkempt patterns.