Posts Tagged ‘fish tattoo

10
May
13

Tattoo Tribute: Columbia River Gorge

Yesterday, I stopped by Infinity Tattoo in Portland, Oregon to visit Amanda Sue Myers and Paul Zenk. While conversing with Paul, he directed me to the tat he was working on. John Cain, Paul’s client, had a vision of paying tribute to the Columbia River Gorge. The Gorge is a diverse gateway that houses majestic beauty, the mighty Columbia River (of course, there are numerous dams), amazing historical events, and FISH!).

I gazed down on the work in progress and told John to please send me a finished photo of the beautiful tattoo.

John Cain's New TatThe tattoo depicts the forested plateau above the gorge, Crown Point’s Vista House, the sturgeon and steelhead and salmon that move up the Columbia River into many tributaries. A very nice piece of work. 

09
Oct
12

Tattoo Love: SwittersB (the Canvas) & Paul Zenk (the Inkster)

TAT/STAT VANITY DAY!

Just the other day, I alluded to a renovation of SwittersB’s Trout Tattoo. For too long the beautiful Trucha has been hovered there on my left forearm, chasing a nymph and seeming suspended and isolated.

tattoo-trout-SwittersB-photography-Jere Ware

Over the years, I had entertained other tattoos for the Trout, but all of them seemed to much in contrast with the fish: Liberty torch, Giant Dragon Fly, Dagger, reclining nude…see what I mean? But, a vision entered my mind of structure, of habitat for the fish. But I didn’t want just a blue layer above to suggest water. I thought more of snags and rocks.

I had some basic ideas and I finally settled upon the quest. I ended up at Infinity Tattoo in North Portland and upon looking at the ‘work books’ of the artist, one artist popped out…Paul Zenk @ Infinity Tattoo. He had done work that was quite close to what I was looking for: tree/snag and rock wise. Nothing with a fish though. I set up the consultation, met Paul and conveyed my ideas and like a spark of genius he started sketching on my arm and paper with suggestions that went well beyond my timid vision. Wow! I said. Done. Let’s do this.

The appointment was set and last week SwittersB’s Trout joined together with Paul Zenk’s vision and what a powerful result. More than I could have imagined. Of course, it is healing now and not suitable for prime time viewing just yet, but the pictures at the time, will give you ample clues as to how amazing a job Paul Zenk did on my forearm.

Total time was around 5 hours. Yes, that was a bit rough after say 3 hours. Mind control becomes a necessity. But, I could not be happier with the outcome and it is a perfect way to celebrate something else…as long as we are on the vanity kick….why not: SwittersB passed the 3,000,000 views mark early today. Yeehaw….thank you loyal and misguided visitors to SwittersB & Fly Fishing!!!

So, here are a few photographs of the tattoo work from beginning to end, more or less and they will give you an idea of the vision and the beautiful outcome.

tattoo-trout-SwittersB-Paul Zenk-photography

This was at the beginning, after Paul Zenk applied the ‘template’ that provides a very basic concept. The rest is in the artist’s mind and hands. Trust is a factor. I had it.

tattoo-trout-SwittersB-Paul Zenk-photography

The template is inked in. Here you can get a glimpse of the rock and branches idea.

tattoo-trout-Paul Zenk-SwittersB

Paul Zenk doing his thing.

tattoo-Paul Zenk-trout-SwittersB-photography

The vision is quite evident by now…SwittersB’s Trout has a definite home.

Tattoo-Trout-Rocks-Paul Zenk-SwittersB-photography

Just finished in the shop. This is a straight on shot, and does not show the top of the forearm (more tree trunk/stump and water surface) nor the bottom of the forearm (beautiful colored rocks in various shades).

I am sure you will agree the tattoo is a serious upgrade and truly amazing. Thank you Paul Zenk. Tattoos are a love ’em or leave ’em alone sort of deal. I understand the image or perceptions and the full range of tastes out there. Of course, I did this for me. In the end, it all goes toward my vision, my personal perceptions, my celebrations. I hope you agree, it is a beautiful piece of work. 

08
Oct
12

Tattoo Overhaul: SwittersB’s Trout

Coming real soon to a monitor near you…SwittersB’s tattoo, the colorful Rainbow Trout chasing the Nymph will be magnificently enhanced and even more amazing. Don’t you just cringe when one self promotes? Well, with good reasons.

06
Jun
12

Trout (A Beginner’s Summary)

Well, this is not my effort to pull out all manner of fancy names and act like I truly remember all this….about Trout. I am borrowing from Wiki and I realize there could be some mistakes or missteps, but the general information is interesting and worth a read. Give the link a once over and refresh your knowledge or learn a few new things….I did.

A most beautiful Rainbow Trout

14
May
12

AMEN BROTHER EDWARD! I WILL OUTLIVE THE BASTARDS…IF I FISH

“One final paragraph of advice: do not burn yourselves out. Be as I am – a reluctant enthusiast….a part-time crusader, a half-hearted fanatic. Save the other half of yourselves and your lives for pleasure and adventure. It is not enough to fight for the land; it is even more important to enjoy it. While you can. While it’s still here. So get out there and hunt and fish and mess around with your friends, ramble out yonder and explore the forests, climb the mountains, bag the peaks, run the rivers, breathe deep of that yet sweet and lucid air, sit quietly for a while and contemplate the precious stillness, the lovely, mysterious, and awesome space. Enjoy yourselves, keep your brain in your head and your head firmly attached to the body, the body active and alive, and I promise you this much; I promise you this one sweet victory over our enemies, over those desk-bound men and women with their hearts in a safe deposit box, and their eyes hypnotized by desk calculators. I promise you this; You will outlive the bastards.” 
― Edward Abbey

Just a couple days out in the chapel fishing. That’s where I’m headed. Oh my yes, the number crunchers are still crunching and writing me at 7pm; the insecure decision makers are wringing their hands…I must mentor better; the world weighs heavy right now on those about me truly trying to help the needy. I will be back in short order, no worries. I got Every Day in May covered too… ‘the moment’ awaits. Besides, I really need a few fish pics to savor later.

After awhile this is a poor substitute.

01
Aug
11

Tattoo Work: Brook Trout on Phillip Synhorst

Phillip Synhorst carries this beautiful Brook Trout tattoo. Char Hall of Side Show Studios Custom Tattoo in Sacramento, California did the work. I have seen a touch of her other work and must say she does beautiful color work. (SwittersB) Thanks Kara/PP

22
Mar
10

Fly Fishing: The Necessary Emergers

The usual fly fishing progression for a beginner is a floating line and a dry fly. The emphasis is on the surface presentation with the dry. The casting is easier, the presentation easier and the takes visible. The match the hatch mantra seems primary.


Then the beginner is told that fish spend the vast majority of their time feeding subsurface on nymphs. So the fly fisher still uses the floating line, but must now adapt to the nymph and perhaps split shot and a strike indicator. Nymphing must be learned and practiced when no surface
activity (hatch, rises) is evident. A lot of fish are caught this way. Also, Streamers and wet flies are stripped and swung.


As the studies and observations progress, the fly fisher dabbles with a bushy dry fly followed by a dropper pattern. From his studies, he has noticed there is a place in between the fly on the surface and the nymph crawling/drifting along the bottom…this middle to upper strata is a new realm of insects striving for the surface. I don’t suggest a dry/dropper set up for the beginner, unless the casts are kept short (15′ to 25′) with an open loop. It is not that this rig is not productive, rather it just is not an easy setup to cast without tangles for the beginner.


At this point the beginning fly fisher has amassed a body of vague knowledge of the aqua-realm from top to bottom and can operate with occasional success. However, there is one area that should be recognized by the beginner as every bit as important as that celebrated primary realm..the top..the surface…the dry fly realm. The Emerger realm should be  viewed as, in many instances, equal to or more important for success than the surface dry fly world.

The emergence of an insect (the vertical emergence, not the horizontal crawl-swim emergence) does start at the bottom, but let’s consider the emergence as three progressions/zones: the bottom zone of the stream/lake; the middle zone where the fly moves quickly upward, or wiggles up and down in a teasing dance; and the upper zone where the flies pass through toward the surface in that gluttonous food cart paradise in the top few feet or inches of space below the meniscus.

The bottom zone is fished with various larva/pupa/nymph patterns and accounts for all those feeding fish. The middle zone is often fished as the fly is either retrieved upward through the zone (stillwater) or the fly swings up through it (rivers). Again, a very productive zone. But, for beginners, the upper zone is the neglected zone.

On a lake the fly fisher retrieves to the surface and once within that upper foot or so, they usually have retrieved the fly close to the angler. The fly is jerked upward and loaded to the rear as the cast is hastened to get back down into the lower zones (have you ever hooked a fish on that backward rip…the fly takes the fly at the very end as you jerk toward the surface. On a stream it is much the same technique and again, hits sometimes comes at the top.

I am going to suggest that the beginning fly fisher develop a taste for the upper zone emerger and fish it before, during and after the hatch. Tie or buy emergers that include unweighted nymphs, parachute emergers, stillborn patterns, sinking dry flies.  I would recommend the following book as your emerger bible…….

Along with your fly patterns, study rise forms. In particular watch for those subsurface flashes of fish slashing through the rising bugs. Look for those swirls, porpoises, splats, quick sips and slow sips. That original floating line will be your primary fly line, although on a lake if you are hesitant to change rods or spools, you can get by with that Intermediate. Emergers…no fuss, many options, and it can ride in the film or sink a bit. Study them, tie them or buy them and use ’em.

How To Fish Emergers

“Any fly that imitates the natural of the hour without hackle, or with parachute hackle, can make a good emerger. Just trimming the hackle off a standard dry fly with your scissors can also make a dry fly more effective. But flies designed specifically as emergers get the profile of an emerging insect just right. You will read about cripples or transitional duns as well as emergers, but I have trouble believing a trout can tell whether a mayfly is in trouble or just emerging.

Certain hatches are best fished with emergers. For Baetis (Blue-Winged Olive), Pale Morning Dun, Pale Evening Dun, March Brown, and Isonychia mayflies, an emerger pattern will almost always outfish a standard dry. And nine times out of ten, you’ll hook more rising fish during caddis and midge hatches with an emerger than with a high floating dry.”

Top to bottom: BWO Emerger, Timerberline Emerger, The Orb Emerger tied by SwittersB

18
Dec
09

Fishing Tattoo: SwittersB’s…Balance Restored By Guiding Hands

SwittersB's New Tattoo

Well, the imbalance is corrected. I resisted the gradual insertion into my psyche that one tattoo on a particular side creates a sense of imbalance. I did not rush to do just anything. My original intent was to wait until something really made sense. Nothing did. I flirted with a female form, curvaceous, but also nymphal in form (no, actually like a nymph)…something I had seen on the back of a fly fishing book years ago. But, that evaporated in time. Gradually, a simpler concept and commitment emerged in my mind, my imagination and finally my heart.

First, I envisioned a our family motto of Semper Paratus (yes, the Coast Guard’s as well) for the Always Prepared~Ready. That is how I was raised and evolved through a long public service career….seems natural, relaxed and right. Always Prepared. Also, a spiritual progression of the Triquetra. My original Father, Son, Holy Ghost…but to me a force of right, of power, of spiritual balance. I saw the Triquetra as ancient, forever, carved in stone, worn but not broken.

This force, to me, reaches beyond the individual and down toward its’ Ops Manager, Mother Nature. A force to guide, maintain, protect the species…and as you can see, the trout (pick your fish). To hold it erect, to over see it. The hands reversed to suggest, not cradling the fish or lifting out to display, but rather to show the placing of the fish into its’ rightful place in this world, my mind, my passion. I know, a whole lot of interpretation going on; I am not that imaginative….but, it resonated, it lasted. It was stenciled on and the ink was applied.

Simple, self satisfying and the balance thing resolved. Family, spiritual, the stewardship of nature and mi amor. (Tat Work Courtesy of Joe Bass, 1928 Tattoo, Portland, Oregon)

08
Nov
09

Tattoo’s To Honor Others….To Honor Your Passions

Tattoo's To Pay Homage to the Departed

A Nice Piece at Drawing Flies 365

Yes, there are many motives to ink, adorn, desecrate, enhance your body. I can only speak for myself and my mix of images, emotions, inclinations. It registers with me to take that huge step toward a tattoo…a visible tattoo. For me it was an in your face display, that flew 100% into the face of all those that knew me…or thought they knew me…to include me.  No regrets. In fact, I am about to leap again into the realm of ink. My ideas are to honor the resources, the quest, the continuum of life and spirit. But, I have noted those that honor the departed via a tattoo. The above tattoo is simple and perfect to honor a loved one. I like it. He’s smiling.

27
Oct
09

Fish Tattoo with Woman (Not So Sure….)

“I prefer women who like to fish rather than women who like to bitch alot.”  FatGuyFF

Fish~Woman Tattoo (Oliver Heublin, Germany, theartoftattoo.wordpress)

theartoftattoo.wordpress.com/2009/02/




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