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Ever Thought About Not Working For You Client?

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by George, Apr 11, 2019.

  1. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    TGF (Richard Christoforo, "The GodFather") and I have been friends for years and talk often. Today we talked about quality taxidermy work and he made one remark that should be in every video and every seminar. He said, "Taxidermists who do quality work do it for themselves and not for the client." If you give a client a piece you wouldnt put in your own home, you may need to reread that.
    rogerswildlife, msestak, EA and 11 others like this.
  2. Brian Reinertson

    Brian Reinertson Well-Known Member

    Agree, I never let a piece out of my shop I wouldn’t be thrilled to display in my home.
    rogerswildlife and msestak like this.

  3. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

    I have to say that the message is good but in all honesty, as a DSCN3502.JPG "Quality" commercial taxidermist I have let mounts go out my door that I would not have in my house and not because of the quality but rather the pose or the mount itself. Here is an example but chit at twice the price of a bobcat, I'll take as many as I can. I also dislike open mouth snarling anything but I do do them as a customer request. I guess if I never achieve the status of a quality taxidermist in other taxidermist's eyes, I can live with that. I feel that we all need to get over ourselves and realize that we all have different skills and ideas as to what equates as quality.
    rigbobby, rogerswildlife and msestak like this.

    CURTBUTT1 New Member

    That is so true
  5. Dave York

    Dave York Well-Known Member

    I’m with you on the snarling mouth open animals. I have a raccoon rug to do with the mouth open to do. I’d feel better if when it’s done to place some Doritos in its mouth or a hot
    When I was 20 I had a boss at a service station that told me “If a customer wants stripes painted on his arse you paint stripes on his arse”.
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2019
    rigbobby likes this.
  6. Richard C

    Richard C Well-Known Member

    George and I were talking craftsmanship . This conversation came about as I was telling George about a restoration that I was doing on a 'new" deer mount. There was no craftsmanship exhibited in any area of the work , symmetry , balance , no anatomical correctness , grooming , no paint and putty artistic work , terrible shrinkage from a bad wet tan and holes missing from around eyes from a bad shaving job . Holes that weren't repaired or camouflaged good. It was a offset shoulder mount that had the
    center of gravity way off and the head spun around because the hanger was in the wrong location.
    It looked like the "mannikin" mounted the deer not a taxidermist . This is the problem today ,you don't have to know anything as the mannikin knows all.
    I told the owner of the deer that the taxidermists that due consistent good work do it for themselves , ( for the love and respect of the specimen), not the customer as "You guys don't know the difference" . His wife knew something was wrong with the deer and clued him in. It was hanging
    with 5 of my deer.
    Now this was a 850.00 deer head , so I have to ask ,if this is a 850.00 deer head what should a good accurate artistic deer cost ?????????????
    EA likes this.
  7. Rick Carter

    Rick Carter Administrator

    Exactly right, George. It's the things you do when nobody knows that matter.
  8. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

    Richard, I believe I understand what you are saying and I agree. I may never hold a candle to some but I do my best on every mount, regardless of what it is. There are a lot of chit mounts being done and it does tarnish the good just by association, unfortunately.
    msestak and Richard C like this.
  9. juli

    juli Active Member

    I agree - do the work for yourself. If you would not be happy with it in your own house, why do you expect your customer to be happy with it?

    However, I also know taxidermists who do 'average to below average quality work' who are absolutely elated with what they produce.... and their customers are too...

    That said, most of the mounts in my house, I wish I could change in some way and I try really hard to produce at least somewhat above average work .... So.....there is that ...
    msestak likes this.
  10. Glenn M

    Glenn M Well-Known Member

    The more you learn, and study your craft the better it gets. But then you spend so much more time making the mount look the way you know it should look, you start, or I should say (I started) losing money because of all this extra time spent on that, and I didnt charge enough for it. I think a lot of taxidermist lose perspective on this. I am not telling you to slap stuff together, but you can't be spending time you are not being properly compensated for . Unless you have rich spouse, or are independently wealthy, etc. lol
    Sometimes meeting your own high standards doesn't pay the bills ! That's why i got a job that pays my bills, and I just do taxidermy as a hobby now ,and enjoy it again.
    Richard C and pir^2h like this.
  11. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    One has to know when to say "good enough." The problem I had was "good enough" wasn't good enough for me, so, I raised the heck out of my prices. I raised my shop rate way up to the point that I was compensated for my good enough. I did well well with that.

    I look at my work from ten years ago and the work I did last year. At three feet away, you could tell how much I improved over the years. At five feet away I was able to see the improvement. At ten feet, well, they both looked great. Beyond that, they were just two mounted heads with cool antlers on them.

    A good majority of my customers hung their mounts from me up near the top of their vaulted ceilings ten to fifteen feet high. You can barely see the racks, let alone the pink color in the septum.

    Still, I made them so that they could be hung at the five foot high, three feet away and they paid for it.