Now, I'm no expert, nor have I ever proclaimed to be one, at fly tying, but something bothers me lately with flies I see posted on forums etc, and its this....
The endless need to blow smoke up folks arses about their flies - and by this I mean bad looking flies that are prescribed by the masses to be 'works of art'
Maybe I'm getting old (34 this year) or maybe I'm just cynical. Probably both. But, there comes a time when we have to draw the line and lay it out straight to fly tyers that their flies look crap. I'm sorry if this hurts anyone, but that's how I feel, because when I started tying classic flies, the critique was laid on thick and heavy.
I'm a believer, that if a fly looks crap, its needs to be said. Not necessarily as I've just said it, because there are ways to positively critique items without causing offence.
What I hate is people of similar skill level, or even better skill level, than the tyer of a fly, stating that a fly looks amazing, is a work of art, when its clear as all day to anyone with eyes that can see, that the eye of the hook is crowded, there's varnish (or head cement), or worse, black varnish all over the hackle, or wings, the ribs are uneven, the body hackle is long enough to look big on a 10/0 shark hook,...yada yada yada. I could go on, endlessly.
Do folks not realize, that by continually reinforcing poor work, the tyer gains little to no advantage? He continues on in oblivion, tying flies that fit the positive praise of his previous work, and wonders why he cant make the flies look like those on magazine pages, websites and online stores....
Fly tyers of the world - its time to get honest. If you don't feel like you can give a positive critique including some things to improve, then don't bother to comment on a fly. Think of it this way, would you go to a chemistry lab and tell the chemist you liked his experiment if he'd just blown up half a lab (not a dog)?? I doubt it. So, If you're not qualified to give critique, then don't give it. Just view the fly and move on.
If on the other hand, you are qualified, then give an honest critique of what you see. Dress it up, dress it down, but either way, give it honestly, to help the new comers to the craft get to where they want to be, and that is tying flies that look good.
Fish don't necessarily care how flies look, but sometimes they do. Flies, in my opinion, catch more fishermen, and they do fish, and maybe I've been caught, one too many times.
That is all.
P.S. here's a fly - a redo of the Wild Irishman I posted last week, on a Sunday style Limerick - 2/0
Hope you like it, though there is plenty wrong with it (head is crap for a start)!!