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Tellico Native

Tellico Native


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This stunning watercolor of a wild and native brook trout is based on a fish caught in the Tellico basin in the Cherokee National Forest of southeast Tennessee. This image not only adds color and character to any room or man cave, but elicits memories of pursuing trout way back up in far flung mountain hollers.

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Why are the hands only penciled in? My intention with all the paintings in my Trout Release series is to replicate that instant when an angler has caught a stunningly beautiful wild trout. The fish is about to be released, but you want to soak up every last detail of the fish in that last second before it swims from your hands. You are so focused on the fish that you are barely aware of your own hands and everything else is a blur.

The water has no definition but clearly has the same colors as the trout. Like the flowing water the trout will quickly slip away, but right now it is in the instant between a real thing in your hands and only a memory in the next instant.

I have fly fished an average of 200 days a year for about 30 years. This is core to my experience and something I know many other serious fly fishers experience as well. It's part of what makes catch and release so meaningful to anglers; the release is often more special than the hook up.

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