NTA 2014 Major Award Winners

Last week in Springdale, Arkansas, the National Taxidermists Association met for the 43rd time to hold their annual convention and competition. For many of those conventions, I have had the privilege to serve as the show photographer which allowed me close access to see every mount. During the awards banquet, we project photos of the winning entries on the big screen as the winners are announced.

With an increase of about 50% over last year’s numbers, the participation in the NTA competition appears to be headed in the right direction. The quality of the entries at was outstanding! Here are the studio photos of the major award winners from the 2014 NTA competition as they were shown when the awards were handed out on Saturday night, July 19, 2014.


North American Grand Champion
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

Judge’s Best of Show
Sponsored by Breakthrough Magazine
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

Taxidermist of the Year
Sponsored by Epo Grip
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

Chris Barnhardt Memorial Award
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

Bill Webb Memorial Award
Sponsored by The Webb Family
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

Sinclair Clark Memorial Award
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

Safari Club International Award
Sponsored by Safari Club International
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep


North American Grand Champion, 2nd Place
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
BRIAN NOODY Garden City, New York 10 Walleye

Challenge of the Art of Taxidermy, First Place
Sponsored by Tohickon Glass Eyes
BRIAN NOODY Garden City, New York 10 Walleye

Distinguished Taxidermist Award
Sponsored by Derma Grip
BRIAN NOODY Garden City, New York 10 Walleye

The Polytranspar Award
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
BRIAN NOODY Garden City, New York 10 Walleye

Taxidermists’ Choice, Best Fish
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
BRIAN NOODY Garden City, New York 10 Walleye


North American Grand Champion, 3rd Place
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
FRED BARILLA Carle Place, New York 07 Pheasant

The WASCO Award
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
FRED BARILLA Carle Place, New York 07 Pheasant

Challenge of the Art of Taxidermy, Second Place
Sponsored by Tohickon Glass Eyes
FRED BARILLA Carle Place, New York 07 Pheasant


Challenge of the Art of Taxidermy, Third Place
Sponsored by Tohickon Glass Eyes
SHANE DAVENPORT Gilmer, Texas 80 Bobcat

People’s Choice
Charley Haynes Memorial Award
SHANE DAVENPORT Gilmer, Texas 80 Bobcat

Brian Harness Memorial Award
Sponsored by the Arkansas Taxidermy Association
SHANE DAVENPORT Gilmer, Texas 80 Bobcat


Challenge of the Art of Taxidermy, Honorable Mention
Sponsored by Tohickon Glass Eyes
ZAC PENNINGTON Camden, Arkansas 25 Otters


Best All-Around Taxidermist
Sponsored by Tohickon Glass Eyes
GREG CUVELIER Aplington, Iowa 59 Black Duck
GREG CUVELIER Aplington, Iowa 57 Largemouth Bass
GREG CUVELIER Aplington, Iowa 60 Whitetail Deer
GREG CUVELIER Aplington, Iowa 58 Raccoon

North American Champions


North American Champion, Whitetail Deer Open-Mouth
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JACK EMERY Carmi, Illinois 41 Whitetail Deer

Joseph Bruchac Memorial Award
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JACK EMERY Carmi, Illinois 41 Whitetail Deer


North American Champion, Warmwater Fish Skin Mount
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
BRIAN NOODY Garden City, New York 10 Walleye


North American Champion, Small Mammal
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
GREG CUVELIER Aplington, Iowa 58 Raccoon

Ivan Harvey Award
Sponsored by the Arkansas Taxidermy Association
GREG CUVELIER Aplington, Iowa 58 Raccoon


North American Champion, Upland Gamebird
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
FRED BARILLA Carle Place, New York 07 Pheasant


North American Champion, Waterfowl
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
RANDY TERRY Fort Smith, Arkansas 15 Blue Goose


North American Champion, Gamehead
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JERRY HUFFAKER Abilene, Texas 85 Desert Bighorn Sheep

National Champions


National Champion, Whitetail Deer Open Mouth
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JAMES NEWPORT Pearsall, Texas 123 Whitetail Deer

Taxidermists’ Choice, Best Whitetail Deer
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
JAMES NEWPORT Pearsall, Texas 123 Whitetail Deer


National Champion, Whitetail Deer Closed Mouth
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
PRESTON MULLINGS Madill, Okalahoma 109 Whitetail Deer


National Champion, Gamehead
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
BRIAN OLSON Platteville, Wisconsin 140 Mule Deer


National Champion, Small Mammal
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JAMES NEWPORT Pearsall, Texas 124 Wild Boar Piglet


National Champion, Large Mammal
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
BEN CROMEENS Houston, TX 65 African Lion

Mounted in Alaska Award
Sponsored by Knight’s Taxidermy
BEN CROMEENS Houston, TX 65 African Lion


National Champion, Upland Gamebird
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
RANDY TERRY Fort Smith, Arkansas 17 Ringneck Pheasant


National Champion, Waterfowl
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
KYLE LANDRY Grand Isle, Louisiana 76 Harlequin


National Champion, Coldwater Fish Skin Mount
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
TONY DAVIDSON Big Pine, California 52 Brook Trout

Star*Fish Award
Sponsored by Star*Fish
TONY DAVIDSON Big Pine, California 51 Brown Trout


National Champion, Warmwater Fish Skin Mount
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
RODNEY HARPER Damascus, Arkansas 44 Largemouth Bass


National Champion, Reptile Reproduction
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
ZAC PENNINGTON Camden, Arkansas 22 Siren Intermedia


The Competitors’ Award
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
RON GIPSON Porter, Texas 150 Chuckar Partridge
RON GIPSON Porter, Texas 152 Mallard/Wood Duck Cross
RON GIPSON Porter, Texas 154 Catfish Reproduction
RON GIPSON Porter, Texas 155 Largemouth Bass Reproduction
RON GIPSON Porter, Texas 153 Largemouth Bass Skin Mount


Professional Division, Best of Category, Reptile Reproduction
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
TIMBO DAIGLE Schiever, Louisiana 53 Snail


Professional Division, Best of Category, Turkey
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
WYATT HAYES Manchester, Tennessee 118 Turkey


Professional Division, Best of Category, Waterfowl
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
TIM FELTS Sumner, Texas 94 Green-Winged Teal


Professional Division, Best of Category, Upland Gamebird
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
DAN LEDOUX Oak Creek, Wisconsin 35 Ruffed Grouse


Professional Division, Best of Category, Lifesize Mammal
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JON JONES City, Missouri 32 Raccoon


Professional Division, Best of Category, Whitetail Deer
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
GARVICE THOMAS Danielsville, Georgia 49 Whitetail Deer


Novice Division, Best of Category
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
CRAIG SCHMELZLE Ste. Genevieve, Missouri 05 Whitetail Deer


Judges’ Best of Show, Collective Artists
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
BRANDON MITCHELL Van Buren, Arkansas and
MARK WICKER Mount Gilead, Ohio 132 Black Bear


Masters’ Choice, First Place
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JACOB CLARK Pleasant Plains, Arkansas 161 Ross Goose


Masters’ Choice, Second Place
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
MITCH WEBB Green Forest, AR 162 Smallmouth Bass


Henry Wichers Inchumuk Award
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
JOHN HUYE Picayune, Mississippi 72 Rabbit


Morgan Reptile Award
Sponsored by Morgan Reptile Replicas
BOB ROWE Stillwater, Oklahoma 11 Iguana


Taxidermists’ Choice, Best Lifesize Mammal
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
LANCE VAN DUESEN Lawson, Missouri 97 Lynx


Taxidermists’ Choice, Best Bird
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
LARRY ELLIS Hinton, Oklahoma 139 Turkey


Judges’ Best of Show, Original Art
Sponsored by the National Taxidermists Association
DAN LEDOUX Oak Creek, Wisconsin 33 Sheep Drawing


Delia Akeley Award
Sponsored by Research Mannikins
REBECCA WILCHER Ashdown, Arkansas 48 Pronghorn Antelopes


Van Dyke’s Award
Sponsored by McKenzie Taxidermy Supply
FRED BARILLA Carle Place, New York 08 Fallow Deer


Al and Evelyn Holmes Award
Sponsored by Evelyn Holmes
CHIP HAYES Manchester, Tennessee 114 Whitetail Deer


People’s Choice Youth Award
Sponsored by Paasche
JARED HARPER Damascus, Arkansas 45 Largemouth Bass

Safari Club International Youth Award
Sponsored by Safari Club International
JARED HARPER Damascus, Arkansas 45 Largemouth Bass

Bill Webb Memorial Youth Award
Sponsored by The Webb Family
JARED HARPER Damascus, Arkansas 45 Largemouth Bass

Horizon Youth Award
Sponsored by TWN Industies
JARED HARPER Damascus, Arkansas 45 Largemouth Bass


People’s Choice Children’s Award
Sponsored by Paasche
JOHN HUYE, IV Picayune, Mississippi 71 Barrow’s Goldeneye

Safari Club International Children’s Award
Sponsored by Safari Club International
JOHN HUYE, IV Picayune, Mississippi 71 Barrow’s Goldeneye

Bill Webb Memorial Children’s Award
Sponsored by The Webb Family
JOHN HUYE, IV Picayune, Mississippi 71 Barrow’s Goldeneye

Horizon Children’s Award
Sponsored by TWN Industies
JOHN HUYE, IV Picayune, Mississippi 71 Barrow’s Goldeneye

Permanent link to this article: http://www.taxidermy.net/ken/?p=1118

Priceless Dioramas Under Threat

Imagine if a state legislature voted to “repurpose” a famous painting in an art museum to make it more relevant for the twenty-first century. Perhaps something like updating “American Gothic” by painting over it to include iPhones? Or by just removing it altogether from the museum, dismantling the canvas, and sending the pieces off to long-forgotten storage facilities. You can bet that the press would be all over it with righteous indignation.

Yet for the past half-century, beautiful works of art have been disappearing at an alarming rate with little protest from the art establishment. Many of the historic dioramas from America’s natural history museums have been lost forever to the march of progress. One of the last great diorama showcases, the Bell Museum in Minnesota, is in grave and imminent danger of this fate. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://www.taxidermy.net/ken/?p=1105

UTA 2014 Competition Winners

Even though I consider myself to be well-travelled, I had never been to North Platte, Nebraska until last week, when I attended the second biannual United Taxidermists Association Expo and Competition as the show photographer. The UTA officers put on a great show, which was well run, and lots of fun for participants. Show organizers got high praise from all attendees who genuinely enjoyed the entire experience. There were great seminars, hands-on workshops, free food, live music, and cordial camaraderie overflowing from every corner of the Sandhills Convention Center. Kudos to Chairwoman Brenda DuVall for achieving the difficult task of keeping the atmosphere loose and festive while simultaneously running a tight ship. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://www.taxidermy.net/ken/?p=1090

The Donnie C Memorial Plaque

Donnie CollierTwo days before Christmas, I logged into the Taxidermy.Net Forum and was met with horrible news. One of our own—a popular, happy, helpful, generous member from Texas—had lost his life in a tragic house fire. I immediately went to Donnie Collier’s account activity and saw where only a few hours before, he had been hanging out on the Forum, interacting with friends in the Taxi.Net Bar & Lounge and discussing Christmas presents for wives in the Current Events Forum.

All of the Forum community was stunned by this sad news. Apparently, the fire started shortly before 4:00 a.m. from a heat lamp which had been placed under the house for the past few weeks to prevent pipes from freezing in the extreme cold. Donnie’s wife and kids were alerted to the fire by smoke alarms and escaped the blaze. When they gathered outside, they realized Donnie was missing. They broke open the windows of the master bedroom in an attempt to rescue Donnie, but the smoke and flames were too intense. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://www.taxidermy.net/ken/?p=1084

Shipping Charge Misconceptions

There are several recurring topics on the Taxidermy.Net Forum which continue to come around again and again as predictable as the seasons. When there is nothing to argue about on the direction of the NTA, the existence of bigfoot, the merits of tanning vs. whatever, or if Bondo is an adhesive, the topic of the day turns to big suppliers trying to squeeze the poor little taxidermists with their unrestrained corporate greed. One of the most revisited issues is the subject of shipping charges from taxidermy supply companies. I have to roll my eyes at many of these posts, as I have seen both sides of these issues. The actual truth is sometimes overlooked. There are many popular misconceptions repeated over and over, which I will address below. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://www.taxidermy.net/ken/?p=1076

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