Hand Made Salmon Hooks|
Ronn Lucas, Sr.
Posted 13 December 2008 - 09:27 PM
some of us here are tough and can take it all, some are not so incline to understand the words or meanings. we all need to remember also, and i say this from experience because i know you all went thru the same things. just as we push ourselves to learn these techniques and applications, so do we try or have tried desperately to learn the language also. beginners often don't even know what we speak of when they are given advise. the terms and names of certain materials or applications are new to them also so learning the language is also an important aspect of this art. we are all from a different level of understanding and trying to explain things to others may often times become confusing. we write of certain applications as critiques to others but do they really understand or rather, do we understand they may not read the words as we, the more accomplished tyers do?
i can only speak for myself here but i will try to address this in a more complacent manner in the future. we should try to make this place welcomed for beginners and masters . make members who are new to this page feel welcomed and give incouragements to post their work, this place has become one of the best learning tools for this disipline we all share an interest in. i admire the work posted by the masters but i'm more interested and take a greater interest in watching some new kid evolved into the art. i take great pleasure in helping others learn what i was so fortunate to have been taught by some very patient people. and those same people who taught me how to tie also taught me the importance of that very patience.
i'm not asking any of you to end your crituqes or comments on flies but rather think of whats being written before we write something that may not be understood or taken the wrong way. i've often read things here that looked harsh, things even written to myself, but after reading thru it a few times i understood the thru meaning. after adding some emotion to the words it became clear it was not meant to look as it did.
taking things in context and adding to another post can also be confusing to our students and that includes me, yes i am a student here as i believe we all are. theres is no one here who hasn't learned something from other members. we are all students here and perhaps we should have a better understandings of how we should address things because of that fact. there is no one member here whos knows it all and there is no member here who has tied the perfect fly. so with that said, we can admire the work of others and strive to emulate that work but their is no fly tying god we all have to bow to and have a fear of. i incourgae beginners to post their work openly with this thought in mind. some of us are more advanced and i encourage beginners and students to never feel intimadated by any of this. we are students and teachers here and topics should be address accordingly
we all enjoy this common interest. i myself have a passion for it and it's brought me great joy and friendships. because some less advanced student joins us doesn't make him or her any less of a member and i incourage everyone to look as these students as human beings first then students second. the fact is we all share another common interest and thats having our feelings hurt. please consider my observations i've posted here and be more compasionate to the feelings of others. an understanding of we, being all different , should make this a more enjoyable place for beginners/new students alike
MY FLY PATTERN DATABASE
FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT OF THE OFFICIAL CLASSICS PAGE SLACKERS CLUB
HONORARY WINNER OF THE 2011 BIGGEST SLACKER AWARD
My mind belongs to this forum
My heart belongs to my family
My soul belongs to my flies
Posted 13 December 2008 - 09:53 PM
Offending the sensibilities of discerning trout since 1955
Posted 13 December 2008 - 09:56 PM
In private conversations I have been told that many here feel that they cannot give honest critiques anymore or they will be seen as negative. Dave Carne has always been an the English B*stard because of his comments but if you will notice he rarely gives much more than a "nice fly" these days because of the reactions given by others when he was trying to help as he has done to many others in the past. I feel the same way and I personally don't give much negative feedback even when others flies have OBVIOUS technical flaws that could easily be fixed with a little instruction. This instruction and advice used to be one of the best things about the forum and sadly it has disappeared because we do not post our opinions lest we should hurt someone's feelings.
Posted 13 December 2008 - 10:59 PM
Thank you for starting this thread. I have several thoughts to share, which may be in some random order, but here goes:
Some tiers post a fly with a "for your enjoyment", or "just whipped this out last night". Others will ask with there fly posting, "What do you think?"
From my standpoint, there are two different reasons for these postings. The first poster doesn't really want a critique of the fly, at least not in a public forum. The fly is posted for amusement, showing a different use of a material, a variation of a classic, an usual use of colors, or even the need to see one's own creation on a web site, imagine that!
The second post is asking for a constructive, critical analysis of the fly- both the "good and the bad" in the eyes of the critic, i.e. who ever might take the time to give an honest opinion. The tier who posted the fly should expect an analysis of the fly! Duke Ellington once said of music, "If is sounds good, it is good." To paraphrase a corollary, "If it looks like rubbish, it is rubbish." There may be elements of the fly that are well tied, proportioned, etc. and others that are just plain wrong. I agree that there are no "tying gods" but we all know a well tied classic salmon fly when we see one. It may vary wth respect to style, but we all know when it is really, really good.
As for artistic flies with no real basis in a classic pattern or style, I see little use in providing a critique. There are no real standards for any constructive critic to use as a reference for analysis of the fly, other than perhaps smooth floss, evenly space ribs, properly married and mounted wings (if there are any of these components) on which to offer suggestions for improved tying.
I agree with Matt that the poster should consider what his purpose is in posting a fly. We all have the opportunity to improve our tying when we are told where the problems appear to be, as well as the attributes of a particular fly. It is even more important for the critic to suggest a solution to the problem for the tier, or at least to affirm that he or she struggles with the same challenge. Sadly, I do not feel the Forum is reaching it maximum potential due to a lack of candid analysis and critique of tying, especially for the Newbies- for the reasons Matt has elucidated, among others.
Having said all that, I will repeat my comments from the past postings. Newbies should concentrate on tying classic patterns first! They should choose a relatively simple, inexpensive, yet pretty fly, such as The Kate and tie it over and over, posting each one for a candid analysis from the Forum. I would encourage everyone (Newbie or Elder) who posts a fly for cirtique to offer their own critique of their fly in the posting.
Another option is to contact any other member of the Forum (hopefully someone with more experience) for a personal critique in a private message. One member of the Forum asked me to analyze several of his flies over an 18 month period. I was brutally honest, but he is a much better tier for it and we remained very good friends, too!! Better yet, send the fly to a mentor so it can be seen in person.
Maybe we need a new area on the site- "The Critics' Corner"!!!?!!!
Off to the bench.
Best from Nashville, Tight Threads and Bright Heads-
"If I have been able to see over the horizon, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants," Sir Isaac Newton
Posted 13 December 2008 - 11:04 PM
I'm sure some people will remember my comment a while back on Keith's fly with annoyance - as I said afterwards at the time I had been in regular contact with Keith and people were reading the comment as if I'd just dropped a bombshell in a vacuum because they didn't know we'd been corresponding.
As I've also said in the past to quote my first serious critique from AO 'that's nice doesn't teach you anything' - hard critiques tempered with encouragement and helpful input are essential to making improvements especially when I for one am working in isolation other than the Forum and telecon's with the likes of Matt, Davie, John and so-on (because I never get to tie with others, let alone classic tyers).
If all people want is an ego polish then let me know and that's all you'll get, I for one don't want that for my flies - but I DO want solutions that I may not know about, just as I pass one ones I know.
Posted 13 December 2008 - 11:12 PM
so post your flies even they are not perfect because those who have been there and done that are the ones who can point out things you can not see and allow you to go into the beyond
i am fairly thick skinned and am prepared to take whatever is thrown at me so my reasons for a lot of this are to try and get some of you to get off the fence and show us what you think or tie and let us tell you what we think
you dont have to like it
to see the rest of the flies i have tied just visit facebook page and browse my photos or galleries
Posted 13 December 2008 - 11:37 PM
Is there a nice way to say "hey buddy, you did something wrong ?"
Yes, we all respond different on peoples reactions but I, and I think most newbies, look at the forum for some time, before joining it. If so, one should know how the advices off different people "sound" like. It didn't scare me away.
One gives just his opinion on what should be changed and some one else points it out with arrows, lines and words.
There isn't a big differens between the two....They just want to help and have no reason off hurting some one feelings.
It makes me sad to read Matt's reaction. I really hope that comments keep comming on the open forum and not only through PM's and Emails.
What I like on this board is, that there are so many people willing to help you improving you skills. I'd say..Let it stay that way.
I know my tying is crap. If people don't give there opinion anymore, it will stay that way.
I can only speak for myself but PLEASE, DON'T STOP TEARING MY WORK APART UP TO THE LAST FIBER AND TELL ME WHAT I SHOULD CHANGE.
Just a thought from a newbie
Note : You may have noticed that I rarely comment on toppics with flies. I love them all but it doesn't feel right to comment on a fly if I even don't know how it should look like...
Here You'll find some that don't have a name.
Posted 13 December 2008 - 11:40 PM
People respond to criticism differently, some are challenged by it, some are offended by it. I think you can be a bit harsh with someone you are mentoring, if you know the person. If you don't, just make a positive suggestion on a way to do it better. Bob from Australia gave me a criticism recently that was very constructive, opened my eyes to something I just wasn't seeing, and did it in a very, very nice way. I'm grateful to Bob, and if all the critiques here were done in that manner, we wouldn't be having this conversation.
For me it's a lot about the one doing the critique. I do have a real problem with guys giving critiques who don't post flies on at least a semi-regular basis. And your general level of skill should be such that you really know whereof you speak. You should be able to tie the fly you're criticizing better than the tier you're criticizing did. Or at least as well. Then, when you open your mouth, you'll be helping.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 12:02 AM
Thanks for the thoughtful insights. I think all the responses following have more than summed it up too. Particularly Matt's, and Dave's. I admit to being sensitive at times to comments, but ultimately have appreciated all of the "negative" more than the positive. I feel at my level I am mostly aware of my faults or weaknesses in techniques, and the Aha!!! moments that have come from good instruction have been invaluable.
I will miss this place these next 5 weeks and will say to any new tiers reading this that these guys and girls are the heart of the Salmon fly tying community plane and simple. From Ronn's constant attention to body work and tags; to Bud's wide open wings of welcoming and Dave Carnes vast wealth of knowledge and fair judgment. Of course many more helpful and caring people here will get you on the right track to success and enjoyment!
Posted 14 December 2008 - 12:12 AM
I will put one together in the next couple of days and let you tear me up. Pain is a case of mind over matter. I dont mind and it dont matter
Posted 14 December 2008 - 12:34 AM
i hope you all know i'm not pointing fingers at anyone, my goal with this was to have our members, newcomer and pros alike have a better understanding and appreciation for each other
MY FLY PATTERN DATABASE
FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT OF THE OFFICIAL CLASSICS PAGE SLACKERS CLUB
HONORARY WINNER OF THE 2011 BIGGEST SLACKER AWARD
My mind belongs to this forum
My heart belongs to my family
My soul belongs to my flies
Posted 14 December 2008 - 01:11 AM
I for one realize the quality of this group, not only for your skills, but also as good people giving your time to promote “Tying the classics”.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 01:47 AM
I freely admit that I don't tend to give a lot of detailed criticism of others flies on the forum, in large part because there are so many others here whose skills and experience exceed mine. Occasionally a newbie will illustrate a problem I've dealt with myself and then I feel I can offer some guidance.
In my opinion, the harshest criticism of all is silence. Posting a fly here and getting 5 or 6 replies, all of them a brief, "nice one" says way more and hurts more than any 2 page critique from one of the superstars. I, for one, would much rather be criticized than ignored.
I'm in a non-tying phase right now: work, Xmas prep, and trying to move my 95 yo mother to a new, smaller, apartment, and finding out she hasn't thrown anything out in the last 16 years is absorbing all the time I have. I look at my vise every day, but never seem to be able to sit down at it. I will, though, one of these days....
Posted 14 December 2008 - 01:49 AM
Posted 14 December 2008 - 02:46 AM
I recall quite a long time ago, I fancied myself a pretty good tyer. I was just learning to tie Speys and Dees. All I had to go by were a couple old books and I had very little interaction with other tyers. Well, I tied my Speys with long bodies down to and sometimes into the bend. That was the way the old Speys that I had seen looked so that was the way I did them. I sent John Shewey some pics of a few of my Speys. He made one comment……..”the bodies are much too long”. I have to say that cut deep into my fragile ego. I got that rather indescribable feeling where your ears ring, the hair on your back stands up and you feel a bit queasy. In reality, I hadn’t done anything wrong at all. Here in the Northwest, Speys and to a little lesser extent Dees, through guys like Syd Glasso, Alec Jackson and a few others were embraced and are fished equal to any other style flies but they shortened the bodies to meet their opinion as what a Spey ought to look like. John and I were both right and I realize that now. I generally tie my Speys with short bodies now anyway. For me, this was a relatively harsh lesson at the time but with hindsight, it was the best thing I could have heard. It influenced how I tie flies to this day.
So, just how do we help newer tyers or even experienced tyers who have learned bad habits and not bruise sometimes fragile egos? I don’t have a good answer for that because everyone is different and handles criticism differently. If a tyer has read a lot of the posts on this forum and in particular critiques of flies, he/she will, or should be able to see in pretty short order that the vast number of comments directed to flaws have been given by the various tyers in an effort to help the tyer, NOT hurt them.
I can only speak for myself but I will try to give my thoughts on why and how I respond to flies posted by other tyers. First, I wouldn’t critique flies done by ……..hmmmm……how to put this……….masters seems a bit lofty but maybe highly accomplished tyers like Dave Gotzmer, Bud, Paul Rossman, Ted Patlen and so on. There are many more but I think you get the idea. Should any of them ASK for my input, I would give it of course. Since I know my flaws, I don’t seek critiques as I am sure they wouldn’t. Because I know from personal experience how even truthful comments can hurt, I try to be gentle when giving advise or tips to other tyers and in particular, new ones. That said, I am a tough task master. If I am asked and I take the time to reply, I have little patience with someone who just won’t listen and apply the information. What I do isn’t THE way, it is A way of tying. Take what you want and leave the rest. I will do everything I can to help a willing new tyer. I do it free of charge, just to help the craft continue and grow. I designed my lessons after careful thought. There is a reason for every lesson and by the end of them, if the tyer has done what I say, they will have the tools they need to tie fully dressed flies be they classics or freestyle and do it well. They will certainly have to continue to study and learn through many hours of trial and error to hone their skills.
Tying fully dressed flies is at the same time, easy and difficult. How is that possible? Well, knowledge is everything. The motions used in tying these flies is really not much different than any other tying discipline. It is the tiny details and movements and yes, tricks that make a decent tyer great. There is no shortcut to getting a seat on the porch with the big dogs. One must pay the dues. Part of that payment is taking it slow and studying everything you do in the smallest detail. The cost of learning to be a good or even great tyer of fully dressed flies is the investment of many…..countless hours at the vise. We all started thinking this would be easy. This is especially true of those of us who could/can tie decent fishing flies. Well, some learn soon while others of us take months to years floundering like a dog chasing it’s tail, we don’t learn that we are getting nowhere even if we do manage to get our tail in our mouth. Direction is the key. Staying on the trail till the end. It takes patience, discipline and determination to become a great or even good tyer of these flies.
Hopefully you new tyers have an idea of what my mindset is regarding this topic. I may at times seem benign with comments like, great fly, super fly, that’s sick or a strict taskmaster who might seem downright mean. In either case, all I want is for each and every one of you to reach your full potential as a tyer. If I can help in that effort, my job has been well done. If not, we both loose. So take my comments and try to see the positive in them. I take no pride in hurt feelings. I do take pride when I see a new tyer become good.
One last thing. You new tyers should and I encourage you to post your flies regardless of the quality. Remember that every big dog started where you are. You have at your fingertips one……….no, the best tool in the world to become good at the craft. No tyer in the history of the world has had the ability to interact in real time with their peers like you do. Use this tool to better your skills. I’m not altogether sure that this tool might even be better in some respects than one on one lessons. Here, you will get many viewpoints and ways of doing things. This is a priceless tool.
Maybe this topic should be pinned so new forum members can get a bit of the flavor of the board members.
Whew, I need to take a rest after all that.
APPLE FRITTER BANDIT
Posted 14 December 2008 - 02:58 AM
I personally like the idea of a critiques corner. For the most part, people know when I am just posting a practice fly and a "serious fly". It's not hard to get into the grove of critiquing and to over look some of the intentions or expectations of a fly. Starting out learning to get used to the lingo, it's not hard to get the wrong impression.
It's not hard to take things seriously, so relax a bit with a glass of eggnog and honey crueler.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 03:14 AM
My background is with the classic patterns so I rarely, if ever, comment on a freestyle or artistic fly. Engineers have the artistic ability of a dung beetle.
Some of the threads started on basics like making underbodies, mounting a wing, making a herl head, etc seem really important to me. I think we need more of these type topics for beginner and experienced tyer alike. For example, when Dave Carne and Matt Inman and I were putting together some information for the CSS we each attached the gut eye differently!
Threads dealing with materials are also very important. How to select and prepare materials would make another great resource for beginner and experienced alike.
I strongly agree with Stack that a tier asking for a critic of his/her fly should provide what he/she thinks is done well or poorly. I know many folks have been scolded for having the tag too long, but if that's what the tier wanted, then in my opinion that's OK. Tags on antique flies tend to be short, but if you read Radencich, the tag is quite long. If the tail and the topping don't touch, is that wrong? Look at any of the engravings in the old books and then tell me if they touch or not (they don't for those of you who don't have the references).
This forum has more information flowing than you can digest. Let's keep up the momentum and we can all learn more.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 05:57 AM
"Some of the threads started on basics like making underbodies, mounting a wing, making a herl head, etc seem really important to me. I think we need more of these type topics for beginner and experienced tyer alike. For example, when Dave Carne and Matt Inman and I were putting together some information for the CSS we each attached the gut eye differently! "
I really agree with this, those posts really helped me out alot.
Lucas A. Jones
Posted 14 December 2008 - 06:22 AM
1. the perfect fly has yet to be tied.
2. If you think you have tied the perfect fly, refer to rule #1. Even the masters don't bat 1.000, and Babe Ruth struck out a hell of a lot of the time.
We have a diverse bunch of folks posting, with some of us posting more comments than flies (Guilty ), but that may be because I won't post a picture of a fly of which I am not proud. If I blow a step or forget to put in a component, I'm not going to be taking a picture of it, so it will not get shared or critiqued except by me. If I don't see it, then your comments are the only way to correct it, and potentially avoid repeating a mistake or bad habit.
Critiques do not have to be nasty, and by that I mean emotional; they can and should be positive and constructive. We are working on a craft which has various levels of expertise and not all master craftsmen are meant to teach or have apprentices. So the unititiated had best recognize that salmon swim in strong currents, and just when you think you are going to make it over that next cascade to that spawing redd, a Grizzly swipes you out of the water and on to the bank...
Perhaps Bud should do that demo on the use of the razor...
Posted 14 December 2008 - 06:45 AM