When Canadian Nick Laferriere is not on the water, he's blogging, tying flies, and drawing fish.
Nick Laferriere approached me after having seen our series on fishy artists and I fired off the usual round of questions. I soon had his replies and a bunch of samples of his art.
An avid fly fisher
Nick is an avid fly fisher hailing from the prairie region of Canada, namely Manitoba.
He tells that although Manitoba isn't a well-known or sought after fly fishing destination, the province does have a very active fly fishing club and some world class stillwater fishing.
- Our fisheries are diverse, with fantastic opportunities for warmwater species like bass, walleye, pike, carp, channel catfish, and rounded off with some great stillwater trout fishing for tigers, brookies, splake, browns, and rainbows.
- Phil Rowley has chosen the Parklands region of Western Manitoba to play host for his spring and fall workshops, so it must be good, Nick says with a smile.
- It is here where I've grown up and was first introduced to fly fishing.
Blogging, tying flies, and drawing fish
When Nick is not on the water, he's blogging, tying flies, and drawing fish.
- It's an obsession that has a strong hold on my life, as he says, and continues:
- My art has always been a mainstay in my life but it wasn't until I started fly fishing that I started to draw fish.
In part, fly fishing has helped him gain a better appreciation for the time spent on the water and the short time we spend with the fish, as he says.
- I am a catch-and-release fisherman and like to snap a few photos for reference. This has helped me in my drawing to ensure I'm getting as close to the real deal as possible.
Nick has been drawing since he could hold a pencil and the pencil is still his favorite. Most artists venture into paint later in their career but Nick has chosen to stick with pencil and watercolour pencil.
- I find this enough of a challenge and with patience, I can get paint-like detail and colour, he explains.
Recently he has adapted his art to include some digital art as well. It combines the hand drawn pieces with different computer drawn parts and digital effects.
Nick thinks that this contrast of traditional pencil art and digital art has proven to be quite attractive and unique, which you can clearly see on the images in the top of this article.
- During my summers I guide, Nick tells. Up until recently he worked throughout the winters, but this spring he has had the opportunity to focus more on the art. He explains:
- A nice way of saying, a big company let a bunch of their staff go!
- Nevertheless, it's allowed me to put as much pencil to paper as sanely possible and I've been able to explore with new techniques and new species!
Nick has had prints available in the past and will be printing even more eventually. He sketches his plans:
- For now I'm trying to build a catalog of drawings before the open water and guiding season begins! Then it's photo reference cataloging time and a chance for me to build up my vault of stories and experiences to share with my guests on the water, aka fishing time!
And as a final remark Nick admits, smiling:
- Yes... I have a huge brown trout tattoo on my back. I like to show people that picture to give them an idea of how nuts I am about fly fishing.