Wildlife artists will be on hand and painting
Falcon Heights, Minn. — Wildlife art will be in the making during the Outdoor News Deer & Turkey Show next month at the State Fairgrounds.
Wildlife artists Michael Sieve, Carl Melichar, and Outdoor News’ own Ron Nelson all will be working on pieces at the show, which is being held Feb. 26-28 at the Warner Coliseum on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds.
Sieve, based in Rushford, hopes to drive home a point with the piece that he is painting in return for a landowner who allowed him to hunt on his property, where Sieve bagged a buck.
“A lot of people let me hunt on their land,” Sieve said. “If I kill a buck on their land, I will do them a small painting as a measure of thanks.”
Sieve said it’s not enough anymore to bring a six pack of beer or a ham to the landowner who has granted you hunting rights. Many hunters lament that they’re losing their hunting access.
“If you are losing your hunting rights and opportunities, you need to think about what you can do for the landowner,” he said. “Of course, not everybody can do a painting like I do, but the next guy is a better electrician or carpenter. What are you willing to do to keep that landowner happy?”
Sieve will be painting an old muskrat trapper set in the late 1800s along the Mississippi River. The landowner he is painting it for was once a trapper on the river.
“He grew up trapping on the Mississippi, and wanted something to bring back the nostalgic days of his past,” said Sieve, who hasn’t painted many trapping pieces since the early days of his painting career about 40 years ago.
Carl Melichar, of Mayer, is known for his sporting dog portrayals, but has also been working for 20 years on a book – “Spectacled Eiders of the Far North at the Bering Sea” – slated for release this year.
“Remember how Lord of the Rings took seven years to be completed?” Melichar joked. “Mine’s going to take a little bit longer.”
His book will feature works from 19 different Minnesota artists, Melichar said.
“It’s been a privilege to work on this beautiful bird (spectacled eiders),” said Melichar, who has visited Alaska about 20 times to observe the bird in its natural setting. “I knew it was going to take some searching to find them.”
As far as what he will be painting at the show, that would mainly include personalizing prints.
“People can watch me,” Melichar said, adding that he will be personalizing a turkey print in particular, and selling items such as coasters, key chains, and jigsaw puzzles featuring his works. He’ll also be handing out bookmarks to kids, and showing some of his sporting dog artwork.
Ron Nelson, editorial layout supervisor for Outdoor News, will also be on hand during the show. He’ll likely work on painting a deer during the show.
Nelson, whose work has been featured several times over the years as Outdoor News Print of the Year, said he’s never painted in front of an audience before.
“The thing I am going to struggle with is interruptions,” Nelson said, noting that he’s always painted in the solitude of his own home. He plans on painting a scene of the location where his son shot his first buck this past fall.
Both Melichar and Sieve have painted at shows before, and they are comfortable painting in front of a crowd.
Another artist on hand will be Richfield-based Tim Turenne, who won Minnesota’s turkey stamp contest for 2017. That print will be on hand, and a copy of it, along with five other works of art, will be given away at the end of the show via a drawing. Turenne will be on hand at the show from 4-7 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, and Sunday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Nelson donated a print called “Gobbler of the Lone Oak Meadow,” for the drawing. That was Outdoor News’ 2006 Print of the Year.
Two copies of Sieve’s 2013 Outdoor News Print of the Year, depicting a buck, called “Down from the Ridge,” will be given away, including a framed canvas giclee (inkjet printer), and a normal print.
A framed print of Scott Storm’s 2012 Outdoor News Print of the Year, “On Track,” depicting a pack of wolves, also will be given away.
Melichar has donated a print called “Walking Turkey” that will be given away as well. All of the prints will be framed.
To enter the drawing for one of the prints, fill out a slip as you exit the show. There will be entry forms for the drawing at each artist’s location as well at the show exits. Winners will be drawn between 3 and 5 p.m. during the Sunday awards ceremony.
Visit Sieve at Booth No. 68, Nelson at No. 55, Melichar at No. 45, and Turenne at No. 38.
See mndeershow.com for complete details on the event.
“Down from the Ridge,” was the 2013 Outdoor News Print of the Year. Two framed copies will be given away at the show, including one giclee. Sieve will be on hand painting an old trapping scene set on the Mississippi River.
Melichar is best known for his work depicting sporting dogs and waterfowl. “Walking Turkey,” above, will be given away on the last afternoon of the show.
Nelson, who said he would be giving away a print of the 2006 Outdoor News Print of the Year, entitled “Gobbler of Lone Oak Meadow,” intends to paint a deer scene during the show.