Social media and the internet is responsible for folk not getting out and about as much and experiencing the great outdoors... they want a "cuddly" and "gentle" outdoors... it isn't, fact, it is red in tooth and claw... nature is wild and at times unforgiving. For those of us that do use the great outdoors the internet is a great method of collection and exchange of information... I have a Twitter account and I tweet occasionally! One of my Twitter followers (Lee Blanton) contacted me from the US and sent me some photos of his flies.
Lee is based in Texas and in his repertoire he ties poppers and decorates them using the Copic marker pen/airbrush system and then coats and cures using BUG-BOND. I am intrigued by the Copic system... Lee's local fly shop stocks a lot of WAPSI products and as regular readers will know WAPSI is the North American distributor of BUG-BOND resins in addition to Veniard Ltd who are the Worldwide distributors of the BUG-BOND brand. Inviting Lee onto the team will add another dimension to the team and increase what we do in the US.
So here is a little bit about Lee and some images of his poppers!
"My name is Lee Blanton; I was born and raised in the South Eastern U.S. I started my fishing on small creeks and streams of north east Alabama, and fishing the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee.
I first picked up a fly rod at age 10, it was a Wright McGill Aristocrat that was my great grandfather’s. Shortly I was addicted and began tying flies, mainly warm water popping bugs to catch those pesky little sunfish. Living on a farm we were lucky enough to have a small stream and a creek running through the property. These waters were where I tested my latest fly. By age 16, I was fairly confident in my tying and starting turning out some trout flies for those small mountain streams in East Tennessee. During my high school years I got involved in water quality assessment, which was not only great for checking water quality but also with aquatic entomology.
My professional tying career started in 2007 in a local shop for some demonstrations and lessons. From there it has evolved into four or five shows a year mainly around my home in Texas (hopefully growing in the near future). My speciality in tying is warm water flies and poppers, but my true passion is trout, especially those small mountain brook trout of East Tennessee."
Welcome to the team Lee!