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Employment Opportunities for Taxidermy

Discussion in 'Taxidermy Employment' started by sparky9880, Jan 1, 2011.

  1. sparky9880

    sparky9880 New Member

    My name is Mark and I have been doing taxidermy, mostly as a personal hobby since i was 15. I have done many deer heads for friends, but no lifesize. I am now 57. I have been in the Information systems IS/IT field (Sales, Project Mgt for about 30 years now and am sort of burned out by it. It also doesnt satisfy any of my artistic desires and talents.

    I have been studying and fine tuning my work seriously for the last 15 years and doing many different kinds of mounts, turkeys, pheasants, small mammals, and even fiberglass fish..I am an artist at heart and have done many paintings as well.

    My question to the communtity is how could one transition into the business and work as a finisher/apprentice? Are there some good shops in N.America that I could maybe find an owner that would be able to take advantage of my skills and desire to fulfill my passion full time. I am certainly willing to start at the bottom of the pay scale and pay my dues, but would need a shop that would be willing to take me under their wing.. (I am not sure I want to have the responsibility of my own shop at this stage of my life). I guess you would call this a "twilight career" that could pay the base bills, but offer an outlet for "artistic expression" that is being wasted by sitting behind a computer every day.

    I am very detail oriented, and most people say my work is very good, but I am all self taught thru some Dan Chase videos / Dan Rhinehart videos, a couple of taxidermy friends, and I am sure there is room for improvement. Most of my mounts like the Africa ones are the first time i have ever done anything like them. I build all my own bases, pedastals, and an very good with saws, tools, and do all my own home improvement work.

    Any guidance direction would be very much appreciated, as I am trying to decide on a career direction at this point in my life. I can send out couple of snapshots of the 9 african mounts i just did (personal safari), including the lifesize Nyala, and all the bases and pedastals were built by me on the weekends.

    Any feedback is appreciated .. or they may be able to offer some advice. I would like to work in a larger shop that does custom dioramas and designing trophy rooms, vs, one that just cranks out deer heads every day. I know I would have to start out doing apprentice type work and pay my dues, but wondered if there are any studios out there that would take this approach.

    I just finished 9 African plains game mounts, and all these are posted on my Facebook page under Mark Peterson. I have many more pics of all my Fibergalss fish and turkey, and Alaska bear mounts.

    Thanks Mark