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I'd like to be game enough to accept some critique on my boar mount please.
I dont know what info you need but i am a taxo in Australia. I have been doing taxidermy on and off, (around having babies), the last 10 yrs. I started doing the odd mount for 'paying people' about 18 months ago.
This boar was damaged in a 'trap' that we use to catch them over here.
The snout was ripped up, 1 ear torn open and hole here n there. I did have a few live refrence pics of him in the trap so i could get his enormous ears right.
My pics are not real good. the mouth looks brighter than it really is. I cant seem to take nice ones like they do in the magazines.
Regards, samantha cervinski
Its sam cervinski i just sent you some pics of a boar for critique.
I forgot to mention i am 36. (middle aged - lol)
I had followed many of Samantha's questions and statements on the Taxidermy.net Forums over time. It made me realize as to how much the American taxidermists take for granted the abundance of inexpensive materials and products we have readily available at our disposal.
Part of what this website is all about is bringing talented people together. A show and tell kind of thing in text and photos.
Samantha is obviously a talent, so I asked her if she would be interesting in sharing her Austrailian taxidermy experiences with us. Her reply is posted below.
Feel free to add comments on this boar also.
Thankyou for your reply. I wasnt sure if my boar was good enough for showing to you guys over there, let alone posting it for critique. :-)
I've got a fairly thick skin though - i hope. I wish to gauge by the/any repsonse on it as to weather to enter competions in NewZealand or not. (we dont have any here, nor any taxidermy assosiation or anything)
Yes, i'd be happy to write something from my point of view on taxidermy here in Australia.
I am not as 'well known' as some of the major artists here, (pegg, burton, ex pat doellinger ect ect) and i dont get the opportunity to mount the animals i have a passion for, like African or NTH American as they do.
Just say the word!
Thanks for the kind words about my mount. I dont think its the best i can do. Its for my own display.
I get 95% of my materials from the major suppliers in the states. It costs a lot more but looking at the finished product, i think its worth the extra.
I have to say the taxinet pages have been my biggest teacher followed by the breakthru and taxi today mags.
Kiwi - wayne, who i met through taxinet and stayed with for a short time learning his techniques 'hands - on' , helped me to realise i just might be able to make a go at this 'art'.
P.S - Here is one of my clients boars i liked. (but i hate the tongue now)
We crown Thee Queen of the Australian Wild Boars
Samantha's boar mount #1
in the subject line of your critique.
Samantha's boar mount #2
in the subject line of your critique.
Samantha you did a great job on the boar. I would not hesitate to let this one go out of my own shop if it were for a customer. Way to go girl.
Only thing I would suggest, define the earbutts just a little bit more. This one, at least it looks like it on the pictures, doesn't seem to have any earbutts. Other then that your boar looks very nice from what I can see on the pictures.
Evelyn Mills (aka Superpig)
I like your first pig very much. You did very good on the nose detail as well the eye and the inside of the mouth. It is somewhat hard to see on the pictures on how smooth the finish work is, but form what I can tell you did a very good job. I like the shape of the ears. The dirt on the pig nose is a good idea for pigs seldom have clean noses, but it is just slightly overdone. Sometimes less is more. Overall this is a very nice pleasing mount you should be proud of.
Evelyn MIlls (aka Superpig)
Samantha, good commercial work for early attempts. I did see a few things you can improve.
The ears have lost some shape where they roll over at the top. Also there is some shrinkage on the lower lobe. Fleshing out to the end of the cartilage is not far enough. There is about 3/4 an inch of fat in the lower ear lobe that must be separated past the conchal cartilage. You may try using some ELC36 earliners. You would need to remove the cartilage from the ear to use earliners. The earbutts are a little under-filled and lack some basic shapes. Keep a spare carcass around to use as reference.
There is also some shrinkage in the eyelids. Be sure to flesh them out thin and evenly and use a good tan. The front corners of the eyes could be a little deeper and the upper lids fuller.
The back corners of the mouth look really stretched, which indicates that you might could have used a smaller mannikin.
The hair patterns on the jowls look like they are not as symmetrical as they should be. Be sure to cover skin alignment and hair patterns.
Finally, use an artificial nose if the original is damaged. The nostrils and wrinkles on top of the nose look better on the artificial noses. good luck on future mounts.
Boar #2 has many of the same type problems as #1 but I think it is actually the better mount. The grooming looks better and it is a much prettier specimen. Work on your ear shape and earbutts.
The eyes need better shape and fullness. Again, study a dead head that is kept in the freezer. Find out if there is a place you could go and study some live captive boar. Take your camera and spend some time studying specific things. Take one of your mounts to the pen and compare the mount to the live hog.
There is a video that may also help you. VHS269 from WASCO demonstrates everything you can imagine.
Women make excellent taxidermists because the have a soft touch and great intuition into animal behavior. You are a smart and gutsy girl to ask for evaluations on your work. I wish you all the best.
PS. A taxidermist from Canberra named Anne Hand came to the US and took a week course from me about 9 years ago. I wonder if you have heard of her. She was a gifted artist and a national champion leather crafter.
Since this article was originally published to the web, Australian taxidermist Samatha Cervinski has set up a web site. Visit her here: