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The Legend Continues

Fred Bear was my archery hero when I was growing up. I would watch "The American Sportsman" Television Series on Saturday nights. Occasionally they played reels of Fred Bear and his hunting adventures. It was a bonus for me to see him on these episodes. He was a left-handed bowhunter, as am I, and being the father of modern archery, he inspired me. I grew up making stick bows, but when I was able to afford one for myself, I purchased a Kodiak Bear Hunter, 50 pounds. I was 15 years old and it was more pounds than I could handle, but it was the last bow on the shelf at the sports store.  So I worked hard and built myself up to it. In no time at all, I was hitting my mark. I can remember shooting my bow 3-4 hours a day. Throughout my life, I have owned five different Bear bows.

My paintings are usually sparked by an idea or thought that I've saved in my reference. Years ago, I read about a hunt when Fred Bear harvested a buck in snowstorm on the ground. It was 1944 in Allegan State Forest (now Allegan State Game Area), MI. I was drawn to the idea that he had shot this buck in a snowstorm, along with the interesting accomplishment to shoot it on the ground. This hunting story prompted the idea for the bowhunting painting, "The Legend Continues." The buck he harvested was a wide rack with shorter tines. Painting "The Legend Continues" enabled me to think of how Fred Bear would have setup for the hunt, chosen his cover, and made his shot. It brought me back to the excitement I felt watching "The American Sportsman."

The Legend Continues

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