Sunday Morning questions(SMQ's) part 37
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
October 19, 2019, 10:15:28 PM

Login with username, password and session length
Search:     Advanced search
1794012 Posts in 224167 Topics by 49577 Members
Latest Member: SaraJean
* Home Help Search Calendar Login Register
Taxidermy.Net Forum  |  Taxidermy Discussion Categories  |  Fish Taxidermy  |  Topic: Sunday Morning questions(SMQ's) part 37 « previous next »
Pages: [1] Print
Author Topic: Sunday Morning questions(SMQ's) part 37  (Read 5533 times)
Rick Krane
Platinum Member
*****
Location: Hinsdale NH
Posts: 2464


Fish Taxidermist/ Judge/ Sculptor/ Instructor


WWW Email
« on: November 05, 2006, 12:05:18 AM »

Good Sunday Morning! Well here we are week 37. This is the first week were the questions are not original more like a best of as I thought after being asked often enough that I would do this for this week. Bill Yox even thought it was a good idea! LOL!
I often wonder as the number go up or down from week to week if the folks out there on the net really take time to read the questions and answers? I know some must as I get personal emails saying so or folks asking if so and so (you know who you are) will be writing this week. Pictures by far are a lot more popular to do and to see! I know for me it always came down to learning one or two little thing to do some thing faster or different that made me want to learn more! I just love this format and again I cant thank Ken Edwards enough and WASCO for making it all possible. Until I get my CD burned fixed or a new one I will be holding off at least for this week on the free fish CD. I still need to get a few out once I get the new CD burned hopefully this week so thank your for your patience. Last weeks winner is Artistic Anglers from Duluth MN!!! Congradlations and way to go Matt!

I thank you and WASCO for letting me share in my passion "FISH! As long as you keep answering the questions, I will keep writing them.

So with out further ado! Lets Get the morning stared to a new week with some fish taxidermy talk! The good people at WASCO give us the free opportunity here to share information so we can be better-informed taxidermist! So in the spirit of WASCO generosity we share freely with each other!

1.) What makes a fish mount "good work"?
2.) What is a good per inch price in your area?
3.) Does it take longer to complete a reproduction for your client as apposed to traditional Fish taxidermy?
4.) Do you in your professional opinion think your clients would rather have a reproduction and what are the advantages to your client?
5.) What do you think... are cold water and warm water fish about the same as far as taxidermy difficulty? If you think they are different in some way tell me a few reasons why.
6.) What are 2 things in your shop you can live with out?
7.) What do you base your prices on? Guesswork, formula's your competition? Why?
8.) What is your policy for as a standard fish deposit? What percentage do you ask for, what if they don't have the full deposit, etc?
9.) List 3 colors which you use that you can't live with out.
Bonus Question
10.)What was the first taxidermy you remember ever seeing? Do you remember what made you want to be a taxidermist? When was it and tell how you made your decision and why?

Give it a shot!
 
Any one who emails me personally with the answers will get a few free reference photos from my personal collection. I still want you to answer here so other can benefit form your input on this topic line.

It is all because of you and your awesome replies this has become so successful!
From beginners to the seasoned pro's every one contributes and all benefit from your great experiences! Let see if I we can get more responses on the forum as well as in my email. I will give you some free fish reference photos for the asking just for contributing! As always I just think your answers are so good more and more contribute on here for all see!

My Best and have fun with this!

Rick Krane
Anglers Artistry
312 Chesterfield Rd
Hinsdale, NH 03451
603.336.7296

Logged

Join us for Anglers Artistry's Big Announcement! Click the Banner for more information:

 
http://anglersartistry.com
Please like us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Rick.Krane.Anglers.Artistry
John C
Platinum Member
*****
Location: Between South Africa and America.
Posts: 16151



Email
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2006, 02:36:56 AM »

1.) What makes a fish mount "good work"?

Anatomy being correct and a realistic paint job.

2.) What is a good per inch price in your area?

$10.00 or more per inch.

3.) Does it take longer to complete a reproduction for your client as apposed to traditional Fish taxidermy?

About the same for me, I tend to put a lot more time into repros  to make them look real.

4.) Do you in your professional opinion think your clients would rather have a reproduction and what are the advantages to your client?

Here they like skin mounts, repros are forever and of course  a lot more durable.

5.) What do you think... are cold water and warm water fish about the same as far as taxidermy difficulty? If you think they are different in some way tell me a few reasons why.

I think they are about the same, cold water may be bit easier in fact, reproducing the head and fins  over rebuilding the head and fleshy areas on warm  water fish.

6.) What are 2 things in your shop you can live with out?

flourescent lights and a tv.

7.) What do you base your prices on? Guesswork, formula's your competition? Why?

I base my prices soley on my cost, plus labor and profit margin.  I could care less what my the guy down the road charges.

8.) What is your policy for as a standard fish deposit? What percentage do you ask for, what if they don't have the full deposit, etc?

50% due within 10 days. Not everyone has the money on hand when a specimen is caught, I can work with them, have not been stiffed in years.

9.) List 3 colors which you use that you can't live with out.

Yellow ochre, white and chrome.

Bonus Question
10.)What was the first taxidermy you remember ever seeing? Do you remember what made you want to be a taxidermist? When was it and tell how you made your decision and why?

Mom worked at Cullen Thompson car dealership  just down the street from Jonas Bros. in Denver Colorado. I would go to Jonas and look and look, i thought their taxidermy was great. This answers part A and part B.

In the mid 1970's I went to Canada caught a nice pike 43 inchs long and 21 inches girth. The Hackidermist I took it to raised the price three times after he had the fish and then refused to paint it correctly, made me supply the panel, and cut the fish down the back some how leaving with a 3 inch gap and a 13   inch girth.

Well this was totally unsat, plus the length of time he had the fish. I decided  then and there I would learn to be a good taxidermist. In just a few weeks after getting my pike back I began learnign and my mounts were better than his.
The rest is history 30 years May 07.
Logged

20% Share holder Advanced Marine Performance, LLC, Hydro hull design engineer Vexus Boats.
Frank E. Kotula
Platinum Member
*****
Location: wilkes barre
Posts: 1968


master, judge, instructor


WWW Email
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2006, 06:31:16 AM »


1.) What makes a fish mount "good work"?
Position, looks, and you client likes it

2.) What is a good per inch price in your area?
I'm not sure since so many play cut throat from $6.00-10.00 still why are you so cheap!

3.) Does it take longer to complete a reproduction for your client as apposed to traditional Fish taxidermy?
If I'm making a cast of it, yes. Only because of set up time.

4.) Do you in your professional opinion think your clients would rather have a reproduction and what are the advantages to your client?
No, my client always want their skin for the mount. They can live without the real head and fins but not the skin. It's their personal feelings.

5.) What do you think... are cold water and warm water fish about the same as far as taxidermy difficulty? If you think they are different in some way tell me a few reasons why.
There different as far as scale size goes and the toughness of there skins. Trout are more a gentle fish to work on but what does compare to scales popping........... a crappie and fresh run fully scaled trout have in common LOL.
For me it's just the different in scale size that makes it a bit harder to paint.

6.) What are 2 things in your shop you can live with out?
air brush and my compressor. I need this to paint cause I may big a big blow hard but I can't push that much air threw a hose.

7.) What do you base your prices on? Guesswork, formula's your competition? Why?
Quality of work and what the economy can afford.

8.) What is your policy for as a standard fish deposit? What percentage do you ask for, what if they don't have the full deposit, etc?
Most generally I ask for $100.00 down.
9.) List 3 colors which you use that you can't live with out.
The primary colors, with out them we don't have any other colors to work with.

Bonus Question
10.)What was the first taxidermy you remember ever seeing? My neighbor that lives up the road from me

 Do you remember what made you want to be a taxidermist?
Yes seeing what he had and did made me get into this.
 When was it and tell how you made your decision and why? I used to see Adam Gall a lot at his home and really liked what he did. He knew I liked it and still being young, gave me a book on how to mount animals. It was his first book and he gave it to me. I still have it to this day.
Logged

Frank E. Kotula
http://www.FranksWildlifeStudio.com
one on one classes 570-819-0391
All phases of taxidermy
UFD
Silver Member
***
Location: Tacoma, WA
Posts: 382


WWW Email
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2006, 06:35:35 AM »

1.  There are a number of things that in my opinion will contribute to making a good fish mount.  First and foremost is proper anatomy of the body, primarily a pose that exhibits flowing lines and no unnatural contours or depressions.  The head should (even if the mouth is wide open) have pleasing contours that also flow with the body.  The fins also look best if they flow with the pose, with the leading edges having complimentary angles to each other and the trailing edges held relatively tight to the body so that the fins do not look like flags stuck from the body.  The other very important factor is the coloring of the mount.  There is a wide range of colors that most species will exhibit so there is likewise a wide range of acceptable coloration, but of most importance is the orientation of those colors in patterning that is consistent with the particular species, i.e., spot or marking placement, stripe or color separation lines being in proper locations on the body, etc.  The actual application of those colors in regards to brilliance and clarity and whether they should be soft or hard edges (relative to the species) also have a huge effect on the overall color scheme.  All of these factors will have a bearing on how realistic the fish mount will look in relation to a real fish.

2.  The pricing per inch for fish in my area/region varies across a fairly wide range.  I refuse to be so bold as to speak for what others should charge or what is an acceptable price or even what is an acceptable quality standard that others should adhere to on a commercial level.  We each have a market niche that we fill based upon our ability level as well as how much time we want to put into our finished product, and whether that is a deliberate or happenstance approach to a certain market level is our own business.  I havent paid too much attention to what all others in my area charge so I cant make a confident estimation of what is either the median or the weighted average price, although I do know that there are a number of fish specialists in the region that do charge above the national norm.  Another idea to consider is that with Internet advertising, your area to draw from has become much larger.

3.  If I have a quality cast that I have bought from a supplier or a mold that I can make a cast out of, I can complete a reproduction in less time than it takes me to do a traditional skin mounted fish.  Based upon time studies of my work, a reproduction takes me about 20% less hands-on time (for coldwater fish) to complete than if using an existing reproduction.  However, if the cast has quite a few problems that I will have to correct, the time spent is nearly the same.  The difference in time between finishing a quality cast and a skin mount, contrary to what most would think, is not based upon the coloring of the fish because I paint both skin mounts and reproductions using identical techniques.  Finish work or preparations before painting are also nearly identical for me.  The difference in time in my case can be traced back to the process of taking the real fish apart and putting it back together to dry.  Many times the labor cost of skinning, fleshing, carving a body, casting a head, and mounting the skin on the body is comparative to the cost of a reproduction blank, so in many cases even though the actual labor time varies, the price per inch on a skin mount and a reproduction computes somewhat similar (although never exactly the same).  Custom-molding a fish for a client is an entirely different situation, and in that case my time on the project is longer than either a skin mount or when using an existing cast.

4.  I do not advertise myself as either a skin mount specialist or a reproduction specialist, but rather as a full-service fish taxidermist.  As such, I have clients that are adamant about having a skin mount made from their catch, and I have those clients that are hardcore catch-and-release fisherman.  It makes no difference to me what method the client requests that I use if the method can be used successfully to create an accurate and reasonably long lasting mount.  Some species I will not do as skin mounts, but most of those types of fish are not my mainstay.  If they just want a typical wall mount and ask for my advice before they have caught their trophy, Ill usually recommend a reproduction, especially if they express a desire to release their catch.  If they want something very unique or if they have killed the fish, Ill suggest a skin mount or a custom molded reproduction.  In all honesty, however, I do like the absolute longevity that a finished replica gives.

5.  At one time I probably considered cold water fish to be more difficult to deal with than warm water fish because of the oil issues, thinner skins and scales, and necessity of molding and casting cold water fish heads, but anymore I dont see one as being more difficult than the other.  In fact, Id almost say that my techniques on the two have evolved to be very similar if not the same.

6.  Not sure of the direction on this one, but Ill give an answer for both.  Two things that I can live without in my shop would be my poorly designed leaking roof and resultant mold, and of course spiders and other bugs LOL!  Two things that I cannot live without in my shop would be constant temperature regulation in the colder months and sinks with running water.  When I first started doing fish taxidermy many years ago, I had a small shop that I had to heat up (wood stove) every cold morning before I could do any work.  I also had to run back and forth from inside to a faucet and hose outside (or to the house if the outside water was frozen) or to keep filling up buckets for a water supply.  If I didnt like doing fish taxidermy so much back then, those two situations may have been a big enough pain to throw in the towel!  In reality I could and did do fish taxidermy without those things, but there are a great many specific tools and materials I require for doing fish taxidermy that my work would suffer without them, and it would be difficult to surmise which were more important because they all have a very important role.
  
7.  I base my prices on the amount of hours I spend on a project, or more specifically the amount of hours in a project multiplied by an hourly shop rate.  The amount of time I spend on a typical project has increased over the years, so my prices have increased with both the additional time I am spending per project AND an increase in the hourly rate to cover increased cost and inflation increases associated with doing business.  Figuring an appropriate hourly rate is as important as figuring how much time one has into a project.  By pricing with guesswork you may guess right but then you might not, and the consequences of that are not conducive to staying in business.  To price based upon your competition may work if you pattern it after someone successful in the business of taxidermy, but then why try to limit yourself to be as successful as someone else rather than as successful as you can be yourself?

8.  I carry a lengthy backlog, and I have devised a method that works for my clients and myself.  I require 25% down upon acceptance of the work order contract to schedule the work and obtain necessary materials.  When the project comes up on my backlog and I am ready to proceed towards completion, I require an additional 50% before work will continue, and then the 25% balance upon completion.  The second payment of 50% does a couple of things for my client and myself.  It allows them some time to come up with the bulk of the money for the project before I begin, since it isnt necessary to have most of it up front if I wont be working on it for a while.  It also gives me business cash flow and allows the determination of who is serious about having their project completed and who is not either financially able to proceed or those that may have changed their mind about pursuing the project.  If I havent received the full 75% when I am ready to proceed on the project, I will simply move on to the next in line.  If I have skipped over someone because they dont have the funds to continue, they will keep moving behind the next person who is ready to continue until they are ready to fund their project.  For some that cannot continue with their project for whatever reason, it is reasonably painless for them because they wont have lost a larger percentage deposit.  With the amount of time that I have into a typical project, I will not proceed on only good faith.  With the possibility I may finish a project and not get reimbursed for the bulk of the time I have spent on it, the scenario isnt fair to me or my other clients who have been waiting in line.

9.  I guess the standard answer would be red, yellow, and blue since you can use them to make other colors, but since most of the fish that I do are bright salmonids, Ill throw three unique ones out here that I couldnt live without.  The first would be a chrome iridescent silver in a variety of viscosities for both spraying and hand painting, since that color is a given when it comes to bright fish.  The second would be an iridescent or shimmering violet or purple, since that is the most prevalent iridescent on ocean caught salmonids.  The third would be Paynes gray, the dark blue color that I have found so many uses for on the head, mouth, fins, and backs of bright coldwater fish.  Like the chrome silver, Id want the Paynes gray in viscosities that would allow me to airbrush it as well as hand paint with it.

10.  When I was about ten I do recall seeing my brother-in-laws deer head when we visited, and that would have to be the first piece of taxidermy I recall seeing, but it didnt have any impression on me one way or the other.  I most likely saw other taxidermy examples but those didnt leave an impression that I could recall.  When I was twelve I caught a good-sized Largemouth Bass and my parents had it mounted by a local taxidermist for me.  I had to go to school so my Mom brought the fish to the taxidermist without me and I never went to his shop until we picked up the finished fish.  The fish in the shop that I saw when we went to pick mine up were the first that I can vividly remember, and I studied mine front to back religiously over that winter and next spring.  When school got out the next summer, I lucked into finding a fishing book that had two pages devoted to fish taxidermy, and from that book and studying my mounted LM Bass, I skinned and fleshed a nine inch LM Bass and put it back together using materials I had scrounged from around the house and garage.  That was 26 years ago, and the fascination with fish taxidermy has never ceased.  Sometimes I think that I should have done something else or could be doing something else and making some real coin, but then I get this weird little realization that I am doing what I was meant to be doing.
Logged
hford
Bronze Member
**
Posts: 45


Email
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2006, 09:19:20 AM »

1. Natural pose, color, markings, good paint job.
2. 12 dollars in.
3. no
4.no,skin mounts are a little cheaper.
5.Not sure hardly ever do coldwater fish in S.Ga.
6. Airbrush,compressor
7.Material cost,time,overhead, as cost of these rise so do my prices.
8.One third, work doe not start without deposit.
9. Candy Yellow, Chromepearl, Black
10. My dad had a deerhead mounted in 1963. I went with him to Mr.E.H.Self's shop in Orange Lake, Fla. I was amazed at the animals birds and fish in his studio, he had over 400 displays.
   
Logged
mayhem15
Silver Member
***
Location: Tampa Florida
Posts: 246



WWW Email
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2006, 09:40:00 AM »

1) I feel that the right eyes in a mount ,gives it its Life > which is the most important thing to me.  I really hate seeing a mount that someone spent so much time and effort making a beautiful paintjob, while throwing in some crappy eyes. Just ruins it for me.

   50% EYES
   25% PAINT JOB
   25% POSE     
 

2)  $10

3) I only do reproductions and the fastest ones I can make are from  Arps & Bevs Fish Creations.  Better quality and less body work , means less time spent on a blank.


4) Repro or Skin Mount? Well Im in  the repro biz, so I try to lean the customer towards getting a repro. But I if someone wants a skin mount, Ill send them to the other guy here in town. 
I prefer the look of repros, but nothing beats having your actual fish mounted on the wall.

5) Painting cold water fish such as trout and salmon, takes me much longer than painting  bass, or crappie.

6) A) The bugs

    B) the toads, i get al ot of those guys since i have a lot of bugs

7) I base my prices on supplies, time put into the mount, and the high cost of running my business. I take way too long to make each mount. I am  realizing I cant make fish full time and pay the endless amounts of bills ,with out keeping my prices relatively high. 

8. I ask for 50% down and  the other 50% when completed. The first half pays for supplies and the second half pushes me to finish the mount.

9) Black, White, and Metallic Silver Bright.

10) I saw a Mahi-Mahi at a sea food restaurant when I was real little . Went home and made one out of card board, paper , and cotton stuffing. Came out like crap but what do you expect from a kid. From there on I was hooked.
In High school , I started stuffing squirrels, fish, and  a few deer heads. I got out of it for a few years , until I saw a hammerhead shark selling on ebay and thought, I can do this. Started making  repros and skin mounts for ebay. Realized I liked repros better, so stuck with those and made a business out of it. 

« Last Edit: November 05, 2006, 10:33:31 AM by mayhem15 » Logged

Chad See
Silver Member
***
Location: Elkins, WV
Posts: 463


Certified "Fish Head"


WWW Email
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2006, 09:48:24 AM »

Cool, this is kinda like a greatest hits album for the Sunday Morning Questions.  Anyways, glad to see this tradition has lasted long enough to do a post like this.  37weeks :o is A LOT of question!  

1.) What makes a fish mount "good work"?

To me, a fish posed in a natural position and attached to its base so that the mount has good flow is a good start to "good work."  Top that off with a paint job that accurrately dipicts the species being painted, has good depth, scale tippings, and looks natural, and you are well on your way to "good work."

2.) What is a good per inch price in your area?

Price in my area varies a lot.  Before I started doing taxidermy, I had a brown trout mounted and it cost me $6 an inch and the guy had a $75 minimum.  I thought, wow, that is pretty high! LOL  Now, I personallycharge $12 an inch and have a $200 minimum.  I know of one guy in the area that is higher than me, and most others are cheaper.

3.) Does it take longer to complete a reproduction for your client as apposed to traditional Fish taxidermy?

I think that depends on whether you are casting your own blanks or not.  If you are buying a commercial replica, I think they time is about the same, providing there is not a ton of work to be done to the blank.  However, if I were to have to cast my own fish and make a custom replica, that would be more time consuming.

4.) Do you in your professional opinion think your clients would rather have a reproduction and what are the advantages to your client?

The majority of my customers, want "thier fish."  While I have seen a trend towards more replicas as of late, most of my work is with the real fish.  A good quality replica is hard to beat, and it allows the client to release his or her trophy back to the water for another to catch.  When molded from prime specimens by someone who knows what they are doing, replicas can and often times do look better than skin mounts.

5.) What do you think... are cold water and warm water fish about the same as far as taxidermy difficulty? If you think they are different in some way tell me a few reasons why.

In all reality, they are about the same, but for me, I find warm water to be a bit easier.  The scales are larger and that allows me to tip them and rebuld them on my seams a bit easier.  I guess maybe it is because 99% of the work I get in is coldwater, but doing a bass is usually a welcome change in my shop!

6.) What are 2 things in your shop you can live with out?

I can live without the telephone ringing in the middle of skinning something and looking at the caller ID to see that it is a call I need to take, so I have to answer the phone smelling all fishy.  Gotta love those fishy phones!  I could also live without clean up time.  Love to work on those critters, but hate the clean up.  Maybe I am just too messy!  As for two things that I could not live without in my shop, that would be my airbrush and my reference library.  Those babies are important!!!

7.) What do you base your prices on? Guesswork, formula's your competition? Why?

I have a formula which factors in my overhead, my material cost, and my wage that I pay myself.  I adjust prices when I have a change in any of the factors in my formula or when a new technique comes a long that I feel makes the end product worth more than it is already.  You have to factor in all of the above, otherwise it's just guesswork.  I dont know about anyone else, I dont really want to guess if I am making ends meet or not!

8.) What is your policy for as a standard fish deposit? What percentage do you ask for, what if they don't have the full deposit, etc?

I require 50% down before any work will be started.  The client has 30 days to meet this deposit, or to be making payments on that deposit.  After 30 days of no effort on the clients part, he will be asked to pick up this fish or it will become property of my shop.  I then require full payment before pick up and the client has 60 days to meet that.

9.) List 3 colors which you use that you can't live with out.

Hmm, thats tough.  Warm black, white, yellow ocre.

Bonus Question
10.)What was the first taxidermy you remember ever seeing? Do you remember what made you want to be a taxidermist? When was it and tell how you made your decision and why?

Wow, the first taxidermy I remember seeing.  It has to be a bass that my uncle had mounted in his house.  He was so proud of that thing.  This one is easy.  I shot the bear of a lifetime here in WV.  He was over 300lbs and I couldn't have been happier.  I had an uncle who was a taxidermist, so naturally, I took it to him to be done.  After about a month of having it back, it stunk.  It stunk bad!  Today, what parts of it the moths havent eaten hangs in my parents garage and on warm days, you can barely go in there.  I was young and paid GOOD MONEY to get that thing done.  I decided then and there that I was going to learn how to do taxidermy and learn to do it right.  I never wanted another person to have a trophy lost to someone who THINKS they know what they are doing.  With this in mind, I found a school to teach me, I went, I learned, I opened my shop.  Now I am doing something that I love and it gives me great pride to work on the trophies of others, knowing that I give each of them the best I can.
Logged
Wild Bill
Silver Member
***
Location: Corning, New York
Posts: 222


If my hats missing im fishing


Email
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2006, 01:47:28 PM »

1.) Overall anatomy and a great paint job. There are so many variations in color for each individual fish that I think its important to paint each fish exactly how it looked when the customer brought it to me. I like it when the customer says it looks better now than when he caught it.

2.) Average price in my area is 10.00 an inch. I charge 11.00

3.) and 4.) These two questions go together for me. I have only done a couple of repo's in the past. Almost all my customers prefer skin mounts. Although I know repo's will last forever, the people I deal with want what they caught.

5.) I think they are the same for me, except for the painting. I'll spend more time painting a trout then a Bass or Crappie.

6.) The phone ringing off the hook, especially now with all the election canpaign calls and dust.

7.) Competition and quality of my work.

8.) 50% down. Without a deposit they can take it home. I do try to work with people and give them time if they don't have the deposit, but the work won't start anymore without it. Been burned in the past from being too much a nice guy.

9.) My Dad had some fish mounts hanging on his wall. I got layed off from my job in 1983 because the company I worked for filed for bankrupcy. I was layed off for almost three years and doing odd jobs trying to survive....bartending, etc. I remember sitting at my Dads house looking up at his fish wondering if I could do that. I was always good at art in school and thought to myself if I could learn taxidermy, I would'nt ever have to depend on someone else to make a living. I ended up working at another company, but stuck to the taxidermy also because I have always been a fisherman and I am fasinated with fish. I kept at it, always trying to gain knowledge and get better. I did taxidermy part time until 2001. I ended up having brain surgery and had a stroke during my procedure. When my wife brought me home from the hospital I could'nt even remember how to do taxidermy. It took me a year and a half to get back where I was and now this is all I do and I love it. I look at life differantly now and feel blessed to be here doing what I love to do.
Logged
UFD
Silver Member
***
Location: Tacoma, WA
Posts: 382


WWW Email
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2006, 04:12:05 PM »

Wild Bill, that's quite a story of overcoming adversity that you have - I'm glad that you are still here among us doing what you're doing!
Logged
Wild Bill
Silver Member
***
Location: Corning, New York
Posts: 222


If my hats missing im fishing


Email
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2006, 07:30:39 PM »

Thanks UFD !!
Logged
Ken D
Gold Member
****
Location: Pensacola, Florida
Posts: 608



WWW Email
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2006, 08:16:28 PM »

Sorry so late to the party again this week...We are still renovating our old shop to accomidate more classes and it is consuming all of my time...a couple more weeks and I think we will be through!
Thanks again to Rick as usual for the SMQs! Ken

1.)What makes a fish mount "good work"?
Accuracy (which encompasses a number of things that make it true in its representation of the live fish) and ultimately, your customers opinion of it!

2.) What is a good per inch price in your area?
I use slot pricing, but I think $12 per inch for a bass skin mount in my area (SW Georgia) is about right.

3.) Does it take longer to complete a reproduction for your client as apposed to traditional Fish taxidermy?
If you are talking about a custom repro I would say yesa commercial blank no.

4.) Do you in your professional opinion think your clients would rather have a reproduction and what are the advantages to your client?
Most of mine want the skin. In the past, I havent really pushed them that hard toward repros. Clearly, a repro is never going to have the potential problems that you could have with a skin mount.

5.) What do you think... are cold water and warm water fish about the same as far as taxidermy difficulty? If you think they are different in some way tell me a few reasons why.
The only thing I would say is different in terms of difficulty level would be painting and possible the added steps involved with coldwater fish. I actually enjoy mounting trout.

6.) What are 2 things in your shop you can live with out?
Folks who stop by with nothing better to do than keep you from getting anything done.
Phone!

7.) What do you base your prices on? Guesswork, formula's your competition? Why?
I have a standard formula that I use to determine pricing. I consider all direct and indirect costs and a considerable markup. I tend to charge all that the market will bearI didnt always do that but I learned along the way.

8.) What is your policy for as a standard fish deposit? What percentage do you ask for, what if they don't have the full deposit, etc?
Deposit of 50% must be received within 30 days of signing the contract or retrieve it. If any caping, fleshing , etc have been completed to facilitate storage or preparation, customer pays $30 per hour rate or forfeits his trophy. Customer will have 60 days to pay balance and pick up the completed mount.

9.) List 3 colors which you use that you can't live with out.
Red, Yellow and Bluethats a tough one because white is a color I need but those 3 can make pretty much anything else I need for secondary colors.
 
Bonus Question
10.)What was the first taxidermy you remember ever seeing? Do you remember what made you want to be a taxidermist? When was it and tell how you made your decision and why?

From the time I was 5 until I was 15 I spent my summers on a lake in Central Florida where my uncle and aunt lived. I used to fish that lake everyday and my uncle had several fish from 10 to 12 lbs mounted on the wall so that was my first experience but I still didnt get a bug for it until High School. Tom Sextons youngest brother was a good friend of mine in high school and I was hanging out with him about the same period of time that Tom was starting to get into competitionI rarely ever saw him come around but hearing about this sparked my intereststill I didnt act on it until much later while I was in the Army. I was at Ft Bragg in school and got sidelined for a while with an injury. The setback was pretty disappointing and so my wife got me a cheer up presenta book about taxidermy. After that, I was fired up and the rest, as they say, is history!
Logged

Rick Krane
Platinum Member
*****
Location: Hinsdale NH
Posts: 2464


Fish Taxidermist/ Judge/ Sculptor/ Instructor


WWW Email
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2006, 09:29:15 PM »

From our freind here in NH Tom V

Thanks Tom!

1. realism and longevity while still maintaining realism over time
2. 15.00
3. reproduction much faster
4. no, they want actual fish
5. yes
6. tirekickers, friends with nothing better to do than bother you, Richard Christoforo LOL
7. skill level and supply costs
8. 50% skin, 75% on repros
9. dark bass green, black, white
10. Had a fish done years ago and after a month it looked like crap. Took it apart and found the head area stuffed with paper towels
 
Tom V
Logged

Join us for Anglers Artistry's Big Announcement! Click the Banner for more information:

 
http://anglersartistry.com
Please like us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Rick.Krane.Anglers.Artistry
longbow
Guest


Email
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2006, 10:46:13 PM »

Late again been doing plumbing repairs but here goes.

1) good work is when the customer likes it better than you and calls a buddy to meet him at home to see his trophy.
2) $12.50 per inch is the norm in this area.
3)Never experienced a repro so I will have to go with skin mount.
4) I think unless the customer is a dedicated catch and release person they will always want their fish mounted.
5) Cold or warm seem about the same for me,but I personally prefer doing cold water fish.
6)I can do without any interruptions as it always seems your up to your elbows in something when they occur and I don't need bugs in the paint job either.
7)I am only doing taxidermy part time right now as I am trying to convert my old garage into a shop,but the going rate around here is $12.50 so that is my rate.
8) 50% when the job comes in or it don't come in, and the balance upon completion and pickup.
9) silver/chrome, white, and black.
10) I was 8 years old and had skinned and dried a couple of water snakes and a couple of roadkill racoons, we were visiting my aunt and uncle and my cousin who was 14 was showing off a duck he had stuffed. We went home and I saved every penny I got from cutting grass and other chores for the neighbours and my alowance and sent for the Northwest School Of Taxidermy mailorder course and I also sat in on some instruction seminars with Jack Wilson a lot of years ago. I may not be the greatest at what I do but I have had some really good help along the way.
I just want to say thanks to you Rick for doing this every week,and thanks to everyone who contributes to making me a more informed fish head  I have already learned so much just from SMQ's that I know my fish work can do nothing but get better.
Logged
Mark V.
Silver Member
***
Location: White Bear Lake, MN.
Posts: 440


Chinook Salmon replica


Email
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2006, 12:51:53 AM »

Hope its not too late to answer I had to process a deer yesterday and tonight so here goes,
1. I would say annatomical accuracy ,A well posed fish in a natural surrounding and a good paintjob would make a fish mount good.

2. Per inch prices around our area vary ranging from 8-15.00 per inch on skin mounts and 10.00 on up for reproductions. I really don't pay alot of attention to it but I have a friend in our area that does taxidermy and we gauge our prices similar to his.

3.I would say I have about the same time in a skin mount and a replica as I do my own finish work on reproductions. If I was getting the replicas paint ready I'm sure it would be far less.

4.Most of our clients still want traditional skin mounts but reproductions are becoming more popular every year in our studio.

5. I think coldwater fish are far more difficult to do as you use artificial parts on them and you have to blend heads into the mannikin or cast the heads. The painting also has a higher difficulty factor.

6. People calling me constantly especially now that deer season is on and another would be solicitors that won't take no for an answer and you have to get rude to them.

7. We base our prices on standard of living and it goes up every year so we raise them  yearly or biyearly.

8.50% deposit when they drop it off and pay the balance upon completion. If the 50% deposit is not made within 30 days the customer is called and gets a notice that his mount will go to the bottom of the pile.

9. Yellow ,white and black

10. The first taxidermy I ever saw was in my fathers studio when I was young. He is the reason I became a taxidermist basically following in his footsteps. I is a family buisness as my sister does taxidermy also.
Logged
Ancient Mariner
New Member
*
Posts: 10


Email
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2006, 05:01:48 PM »

Okay I'll give it a try.

1) It is good work if the customer says, " It looks just exactly like I remember it the day I caught it", or "It looks just like the photo I took of it".  Of course neither will count in  a  competition.  But it is the customer who puts food on your table so it is he/she that  must be satisfied entirely. Of course there are other factors such as poses, etc... but I always let the customer pick the pose and habiitat, so there will be no complaints.

2) Central Ohio area. $8-11 for freshwater. $9-12 for coldwater. $10-14 for repros.

3)Takes me about the same amount of time when I purchase repro blanks.

4)If clients have caught and killed their fish, then they want it mounted. If they want a reproduction done, then they would not have killed the fish ( I hope). I never, welll, almost never try to talk a client into or out of anything. It can come back to bite you in the ass.

5)Warmwater fish are easier to mount and paint for the most part. Fitting artificial heads and getting fin alignment right on coldwater is more difficult. Coldwater skins stretch more which can cause problems if you are not carefull

6) I guess I can't live without my air compressor and air brush.

7)I base prices on my ability to please. When I started I priced low to get business and I did not have the confidence. After a few ribbons and a few hundred satisified customers that have sent me most of my business, I have gained confidence as well as talent. So I have gotten to the point where I keep my prices among the highest in my area. People should pay for what you know and not so much for what you do.

8)50% deposit is required before any work commences or any order takes place for materials. They have 30 days to bring a deposit or must come and pick up their fish or I will dispose of it.

9)White, green, black.

10) About 20 years ago I met a taxidermist and we became fishing buddies and fished tournaments together. He asked me to help him do taxidermy and I have been hooked ever since. We are still best of friends.
Logged
Pages: [1] Print 
Taxidermy.Net Forum  |  Taxidermy Discussion Categories  |  Fish Taxidermy  |  Topic: Sunday Morning questions(SMQ's) part 37 « previous next »
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP
Contents © 2006-2017 Taxidermy.Net, LLC. All rights reserved. © 2017 Carbon Media Group Outdoors. Privacy Policy.
Powered by SMF 2.0.9 | SMF © 2011, Simple Machines
| TOS | Privacy
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.046 seconds with 33 queries.