A painting by John Nelson Harris of Groveland, Florida, was chosen as the winner of the 2014 California Duck Stamp Contest. The painting, which depicts a lesser scaup, now becomes the official design for the 2014-2015 stamp.
Following the contest held June 23 in Davis, the judges complimented Harris’ victorious painting, praising the artist’s meticulous technique and his “pleasing and accurate” depiction of the subject.
“I wanted to bring the scaup to life for its beauty,” said Harris, a veteran wildlife artist who has been the recipient of many awards and honors. “I wanted the scaup and the water to blend together to create an atmosphere of you being out there on the water with the duck.”
Harris and 14 other artists from around the country submitted entries for this year’s contest, sponsored by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). Adam Oswald of Pierre, S.D., placed second, Jeffrey Klinefelter of Etna Green, Ind., placed third and Rob Stine of Eutawville, S.C., received honorable mention.
The four paintings will be displayed at the Pacific Flyway Decoy Association’s 44th Annual Classic Wildlife Art Festival in Sacramento, which is scheduled July 12-13.
Since 1971, the California Duck Stamp Program’s annual contest has attracted top wildlife artists from around the country. All proceeds generated from stamp sales go directly to waterfowl conservation projects throughout California.
In the past, hunters were required to purchase and affix the stamp to their hunting licenses. Today, hunters are no longer required to carry the stamps because California’s modern licensing system prints proof of additional fees paid directly onto the license. However, CDFW still produces the stamps, which can be requested on CDFW’s website at www.dfg.ca.gov/licensing/collectorstamps.
The subject of the 2015 California Duck Stamp Art Contest will be the American green-winged teal, with details on the 2015 contest to be released at a later date.