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which division to enter competion mount in?

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by JRTAXIDERMY, Feb 15, 2017.


    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    This is my first year entering a mount in a competition. I am entering an antelope and I am unsure which division to start with. I am far from a beginner in taxidermy but I have never competed. Any advise on how each division is judged and any other info would be extremely helpful. I want to make sure I enter the mount in which division it belongs in. Thanks for any help

    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    here is some pics of my mount, sorry about the horrible quality of the pics. It would not let me post the good ones

    Attached Files:

  3. i'm not a hundred percent sure, but I think you can enter in the beginners. Someone correct me if i'm wrong.
  4. Most states have novice, professional and master divisions. I would start out in the professional and see how you do. You will get a good critique.
  5. TripleC

    TripleC Member

    You might have the option of either professional or beginner/amateur based on the specific organizational guidelines. I know most will not allow you to enter in a division if you have scored a certain number of blue ribbons in that division. Some organizations even offer a "business/commercial" division that doesn't get the up close inspections that the other divisions receive. The grading criteria is more stringent of course the higher you go. Unfortunately, I don't have a grade sheet in front of me right now, but there might be some judges on here that could shed some more light on that part of it.

    Is your goal a ribbon to display at your business or an honest critique? The answer or your perceived skill level might drive you toward one or the other. Would a blue ribbon in the beginner division be more important than a red, yellow, or no ribbon in the professional division? If you are doing it as a business, would you be deflated if you received a red ribbon in the amateur division? With it being your first one and not realizing everything your mount is getting ready to get critiqued on, then maybe the beginner level is not a bad way to go. If you score a blue ribbon in that division your first time up then I would say that you are ready to move on up to the professional level. I think you may even be able to enter the same mount in the professional division the next time around. I do know people that enter the amateur division in one state's competition and if they score a blue ribbon they will then take it to another state's completion to enter it into their professional division.

    I started in the beginner/amateur division. since I only do this as a hobby right now, but I wanted to learn competition techniques vice commercial techniques. Regardless of the division you enter, get with the judge afterwards and go over your mount. They should tell you things they saw wrong during the judging. Invaluable in taking your artwork to the next level. If you have only done commercial work, standby. From my experience and discussions with guys/gals in the professional and masters division, the attention to detail (which equates to time) is the defining factor between the commercial side and the competition side. Have fun, but have thick skin as well.

    Agree with Bucknut concerning the level of critique in the professional division. They look at more areas of the mount, so you should get more feedback.

    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    Thanks for the help. I am a full time taxidermist with 2 employees and we take in a little over 300 animals a year ranging from African mounts to antler mounts. I'm trying to figure out where to start and where most people that are at my level start. Also I am trying to figure out which will help my business more, a commercial blue ribbon or a red in a higher level. I will try to post some better pics but the size of the image is too large
  7. ortegageno

    ortegageno Active Member

    If you are a full time taxidermist your show pieces better not be in the novice or Amateur division. Your costumer mounts should be able to get at least a 2nd place in professional division.
  8. Depends on what you are wanting. If your just looking to get a cheap ass ribbon and that's all you're after then enter into the amateur category. But if you're seeking more as I hope you are enter into the pro division. Here you will receive a better critique and judged at a much closer range. You will be given some insight to take you farther and assist in taking. You to the next level. Either way good luck to you
  9. critterstuffr

    critterstuffr New Member

    The first time I competed at State level I wanted to enter the Novice division for the same reason I had never competed before. I was asked do you do mounts for other people? I said yes. Then I was asked do you get paid? I said yes. Then he said great and welcome to the Professional division. It's intimidating at first the critique is a little harder but you learn a lot. As it's been said before you have to leave your ego at the door and sometimes what your told stings a little but as I stated you will learn a lot. Now if you want a easy ribbon go Novice if you want to learn and get better then go Pro. As a side note I entered two ducks and got a second and third. It was very cool. Good luck and nice mount.
  10. Paul B

    Paul B Active Member

    Pro division for a good critique. You are ahead of the game with what seems to be a very good cliental and work load. As for helping your business, maybe yes maybe not. I have plenty of ribbons and trophy's from my comp days on display but what stops more customers are the 3, 300 bowling rings my wife made in a display for me, lol.

    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    Thanks for all the advise and information. I decided to enter in the professional division and I ended up getting a blue ribbon. Thanks again for all of the feedback
  12. ortegageno

    ortegageno Active Member

    Here in NM you would get killed on those eye lashes pointed that way. Maybe just the pic but they should be more of a 45 deg angle downward over the eye

    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    Well I guess the judge didn't know what he was talking about because I scored a 94
  14. Duckslayr

    Duckslayr Active Member

    Hammer gave you some honest feedback that's clear in any reference. If this is the first time you heard that, your judge did you a huge disservice. If you want to get real value out of the shows, you will need to check your ego at the door and not be in love with your own work. There is much to be learned for such a person. If you went just to confirm what you already know- your work is great, I'd recommend not going to any more, lest the next judge burst your bubble, and be accused by you of not knowing what he's talking about. If you want to grow in your art, take criticism and compare to reference. What does reference tell you about Hammer's critique?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  15. They forgot to put your pictures on the site with the convention pics.

    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    they were around 50 degrees downward. I tried to post another pic but my phone takes two large of pics to upload them. I do appreciate any help people are willing to give because most people on here know far more than I do and have been in the business as long as ive been alive. I made my smartass comment(that I shouldn't have made and I apologize) insinuating that the picture angle didn't show the actual angle of the lashes.Thanks for the critique and for any help and if someone knows how to make a cellphone pic smaller so I can post them that would be great.
  17. Rausch

    Rausch Well-Known Member

    Photobucket is super easy to use from a smartphone. If you do that you can still post full resolution pictures which is the only way you'll have enough detail to get critiques on fine details.

    There are other image hosting sites besides Photobucket but that's the one I use and it works well for me.
  18. rogerswildlife

    rogerswildlife Rogers Wildlife Taxidermy Tommy Rogers

    The judge was Gene Smith I was there. He knows what he's judging . Congrats on your antelope it look really good .
    Tommy Rogers
  19. msestak

    msestak Well-Known Member

    FYI. i was told that if i am a licensed taxidermist doing work for others then i would have to enter in the professional division. years ago, i entered my first "mini" competition with a few mounts that i did for myself. the judge on the fish mount told me that i should stick with birds, there is less to paint...OUCH, :) lol

    JRTAXIDERMY Jake Rowe Taxidermy

    Thanks Tommy. That means a lot coming from someone that is as good as you. Now if I can only get my deer to look half as good as yours I will be in good shape.