The artwork of Josh Udesen
This past weekend I spent a day checking out the Fly Fishing Show in Lynwood, WA. For those of you that have never attended one of these, the show is a two-day convention of sorts with booth spaces held by people from one of four aspects of the industry: gear manufacturers, lodge/guide services, artists, and organizations that focus on conservation or outreach work. The shows give you a chance to test out the newest gear on the market and talk to people connected to the sport in a wide range of ways. Additionally, there are short classes that cover everything from casting techniques to how to travel to South America to fish.
Some of my favorite parts of the show however, are within the art realm. The show also gives you the chance to watch some of the top fly tiers in the sport, talk to custom bamboo fly rod makers, and also interact with artist of the paint/ink/photography realms. One such artist at this year’s show was Josh Udesen, who currently lives and runs Tightline Studio in Boise, Idaho. If you’ve been around the sport of fly fishing for the past few years you might recognize some of Josh’s work, which has been printed on gear from several of the big names in the industry.
A lot of Josh’s work is similar to the part of the sport that I love photographing: the small, intricate details and bold colors that vary from fish to fish, and it was these aspects that caught my eye as I passed by Josh’s booth. When I finally got the chance to stop at his booth late in the day, I purchased a print entitled “Idaho Redfish” because of the striking contrast between the red sockeye salmon and the blue background. On Monday after the show I mounted the picture on top of a piece of solid matte inside of an 18×24 inch frame. The following is now hanging in our living room:
Even though casting the new Sage Circa 8’9″ 3 wt. was a thing of beauty (and I’ll gladly accept one from anyone that’s feeling generous) and looking at pictures of monster fish from lodges I’ll never be able to afford was entertaining, this print topped them both and will be something that my wife and I can enjoy for years to come.
Be sure to check out all of Josh’s work for yourself at: www.tightlinestudio.com