Trout #2 by Anthony Naples, done on iPod Touch, post-processing in Photoscape
This spring I took a trip to Yellow Creek in Bedford County, PA. I caught this one particular brown trout that had spectacular blue spots. I had never really noticed these before on brown trout. Since then, I notice this feature all the time – it seems relatively commonplace. Why did I notice these blue spots on that fish, when I’d probably seen them a hundred times before, on a hundred other fish? I don’t have the answer. I don’t know if it reflects only on me or on human nature in general. But, apparently my power to ignore what’s right in front of me can be impressive. What else haven’t I noticed?
Panfish #1 by Anthony Naples
In the bleak midwinter with thoughts of more coming snow, I was inspired by a photo from this past summer. Many of us start our fishing lives with sunfish. Some of us never leave that warm and comfortable place – watching and waiting for a red and white bobber to momentarily disappear. My childhood is filled with sunfish. As a fisherman the small pond filled with willing sunfish is my spiritual home. I picture my grandfather, a WWII veteran sitting in a lawn chair catching sunnies. What did the Italian winters of 1943 and 1944 feel like to that young kid from Pittsburgh? Rain and mud, crossing mountains, the disaster of Anzio, the despair and loss, the uncertainty of life. Did he think of youthful, warm summers back home? How far away did they seem? He made it through the war, made it home to his local ponds. Made it home to pass it all on to my father and on to me and so then on to my children.
The cycle continues. Days are getting longer, the sun is gradually getting higher in the sky and we are not forsaken.
Don’t worry – I’m not going to turn into an all fly fishing art website. And I use the term “art” lightly in my case. But I am having fun with the iPod touch and SketchBook Mobile. So I figured that I might as well share. So here is another sketch.
Trout #1 by Anthony Naples
C&O by Franz Kline
One of my new years resolutions in 2010 is to get back to making art. For various reasons, I haven’t made any art to speak of for about 10 years. It is hard for me to even look at certain paintings without the urge to break out the paint.
Painting by Esteban Vicente
I guess certain minds are on the same wavelength. When I look at the work of artists like Franz Kline, Arshile Gorky, Willem de Kooning, Esteban Vicente and Jackson Pollock, I just get it. I feel it. Their art resonates with me and I understand it in a non-verbal way. It makes me want to paint.
Autumn Improvisation by Anthony Naples
So I’ve pretty much avoided looking art by these folks for the last decade or so. I went through a phase when I took this inspiration and made my own art. I tried to communicate in the same visual vernacular established by these other artists. And I created some works that, I think were successful in a small way, at this same type of expression. Though, in no way do I claim to be an artist in the same way that those giants were.
Well, lately the obsession has been fly fishing and fly tying. I have never done much to bring the art and the fly fishing together. I just never felt like I could do it in an honest way. I’m not a painter of bucolic landscapes or hyper-realistic fish (though I greatly respect and am in awe of some of those fish painters). When I saw Derek De Young’s fish paintings though something clicked. These were images that weren’t afraid to be full of saturated colors and painterly gesture. I found myself wishing that I had thought of this (and had the talent to actually pull it off). Check out his painting gallery at website canvasfish.com.
Well that is a long intro to present the first piece of fly fishing related art that I’ve produced this year as a part of my New Years Resolution. Hopefully someday I’ll actually get real materials out, but for now I’m content sketching on the iPod touch using the app Autodesk SketchBook Mobile. It’s an awesome little app that’s actually a pretty powerful tool. I can recommend it to any iPod or iPhone users that want a drawing program. It is well worth the $2.99 that it costs. Check out the Flickr group to see some other work that people are doing with their iPod and SketchBook Mobile. Well here it is…
Dry Fly #1 by Anthony Naples