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A Dynomite Cover On Taxidermy Today Magazine

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by Joe Kish, Sep 22, 2022.

  1. Joe Kish

    Joe Kish Well-Known Member

    Rich Carter Does it again.
    As a former taxidermy magazine editor/publisher (Taxidermy Review, TR) I look forward to receiving each current issue of the two existing publications – Taxidermy Today and Breakthrough. Taxidermy Today (TT) advertises itself as “The World’s Foremost Taxidermy Magazine”, and Breakthrough (BT) promotes itself as “The Magazine Devoted to the Serious Wildlife Artist.” Both are up to speed on first class editorial and publishing standards. Neither’s claim clashes with the other, and both are directed exclusively or primarily toward a taxidermist readership. I personally have written dozens of articles published in both magazines, including an article, “Sculpting a Gray Fox” in the current issue of Taxidermy Today – Sept./October 2022..

    While I generally like to browse the technical articles to see and learn who is doing what and how he/she is doing it, my first and foremost interest is in what’s on the cover. That is because the cover on any magazine being the thing that usually indicates the state of the art or whatever an editor determines is of the latest or most topical interest to its readership. Guns and Ammo will invariably show a hot new rifle or caliber on its covers and Motor Trend will feature Truck of the Year, or some such.

    As for our two taxidermy magazines, there is no lack of outstanding taxidermy to grace their covers, in fact while TT frequently presents an example of work from one of its writers or readers, BT usually features competition show stoppers as well as the works of its writers. It’s often a difficult choice for an editor to decide on what to put on a cover since there is virtually an unlimited supply of fine examples of taxidermy craftsmanship (and artistry) from private studios as well as competitions. Many of these choices are In fact from the very sources from which readers expect our magazines to publish cover pictures.

    And here’s the rub -- More often than not, however, I find the majority of lifesize cover photos disappointing in that although the technical accuracy of the specimens themselves are first class, the postures and habitat settings are mostly failures of solid composition and design. In my opinion, too much of the taxidermists egos show through and spoil the setting of both rare and common specimens. In other words, too much fantasy imagination and too little plausibility of natural phenomena.

    But only occasionally will a cover picture appear that by virtue of some special feature about it, strikes a cord, unlike most of its predecessors. You’re seeing it below from the cover of the current Taxidermy Today. This is a white tail mount by Rick Carter. Remarkable realism by any measure.

    Every part of the eye work, the ears, the muzzle, head and neck is lifelike from every angle. And I’ve never seen quite this measure of preservation and realism of velvet on the rack. The method by which Rick achieved this degree of velvet preservation is proprietary information so don’t try to get the Master to give you a free tutorial on the phone. Rick is well known for the high caliber of everything he does, so I if you like what you see here, I recommend that you file these pictures in your reference file. They’re as good as photos of a live deer. I suggest you check out Rick and Nicki Carters’ web site for lots of good and helpful materials. https://www.cartertaxidermy.com/


    (This piece was willfully written in sincere admiration of Rick Carter’s outstanding work and Taxidermy Today’s excellent choice of a cover photo. Not a penny changed hands.)

  2. Ken Edwards

    Ken Edwards Taxidermy.Net Administrator Staff Member

    Yes, indeed, Joe. Rick is an amazingly talented artist. I am so happy to see that he is finally living his best life.
    Tony Corleone and msestak like this.

  3. Joe Kish

    Joe Kish Well-Known Member

    Yes, and he's still at the height of his artistic powers. Technical work like Rick's is not particularly uncommon. Master taxidermists are in every branch of the art. I mean as far as technical and artistic realism goes. But what is rare outside of the finest museums is the kind of realism in the expression of a particular attitude of a particular specimen that it looks more like the living thing that it represents and less like the mounted skin which it is. Interpreting and expressing life like that with a limp tanned skin over a rigid mannikin separates the men from the boys. Rich's work reminds me of a quote from Solzhenitsyn:

    ....“a work of art bears within itself its own verification: conceptions which are devised or stretched do not stand being portrayed in images, they convince no one. But those works of art which have scooped up the truth and presented it to us as a living force — they take hold of us, compel us and nobody ever, not even in ages to come, will appear to refute them.” He went on to say that the artist has merely to be more keenly aware than others of the beauty and ugliness of the human contribution to it, and to communicate this acutely to his fellow-men.

    And this doesn't even touch on his habitat compositions. He made his reputation there with his Pumkinpatch Whitetail years ago. For those who never saw that great idea, google his website.
    Tony Corleone and msestak like this.
  4. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    I read the pumpkin patch article he did over and over again.
    Tony Corleone and msestak like this.
  5. Rick Carter

    Rick Carter Administrator

    Wow! What a nice compliment, Joe. I am always thrilled to have my work featured in any taxidermy publication getting good reviews is icing on the cake. It’s always nice to get support from your peers. I think all of us do work every day that should be recognized and appreciated.