Back in 1976 I entered the World Championship Decorative Decoy Pairs for the first time with a pair of Common Goldeneyes. These were judged Best in World, my first World title. Following that I was commissioned to create another pair of decorative Goldeneyes. I had not seen those birds for over 35 years, but recently had the opportunity to view these as well as a pair of Buffleheads created in 1978.
The Goldeneye and the Bufflehead pair were carved from basswood and the bodies were hollowed for flotation. Certainly, at that time Basswood was the best option for me. It finished and carved very well and also was great for a very finely detailed surface, but due to the weight of the wood required hollowing for correct flotation. It was not until 1981-82 that I first used a piece of Tupelo, given to me by Tan Brunet, to carve the Muskrat for my 1982 Best in World Decorative Life Size piece “Along the Grand – Black Ducks and Muskrat”. Handmade Imbuya wood bases.
Both of these Goldeneyes from 1977 were Best of Show winners and had placements in a number of shows, including Best of Show awards. So, they are representative of the quality of carvings from that era. At the time we had “Professional” and “Amateur” levels of competition and later this was changed to “Open” and “Intermediate”. I began competing Professional in 1975, so all of the awards the Goldeneyes and Buffleheads won were at that level.
The original owner of these Goldeneyes and the pair of Buffleheads wishes to sell these birds. They are all in pristine condition. The birds are presented on hand made Imbuya wood bases. For information on these anyone interested in additional information can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-448-1244.
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