Onto Colorado

It’s amazing what one fish can do for a guy. It wasn’t huge, but a respectable brown on a dry fly from Colorado’s namesake river. Caddis swarms began as the light left West America, and gave me a shot at lifting spirits. It amazes me that this thundering river runs dry at the hands of man.

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I created this piece before heading west. It explores the ravenous anticipation of a Midwesterner dreaming of cutthroat in mountain lakes. As it turns out they do exist, are much better looking than this doodle, and when a big pink dry comes their way, they too are ravenous.

Prior to this evening outing I had been a little bitch. Some might have called it pouting. Why? I am not totally certain. I should have been beaming, but wasn’t. I am an upstart artist from Minneapolis who just quit his bullshit warehouse job to head west on a month long tour in search of trouty markets.

The old tent has a little lean to her, but she hunts. Loaded to the gills with the finest of arts, we awaited tourists and mountain weather at the Lake Dillon Arts Festival.
The old tent has a little lean to her, but she hunts. Loaded to the gills with the finest of arts, we awaited tourists and mountain weather at the Lake Dillon Arts Festival.

Romantically, I would hock my wares in gypsy fashion in the shadows of really big rocks, and fish my days off on storied rivers and those less revered. Living the dream, as the kids say. In the last few days I had driven hundreds of miles across flat country outrunning Nebraska super storms and chugging 5 Hour Energy. I had handled business minded adult things in Denver, caught feisty dinks in the headwaters of the Arkansas, and sold a couple small pieces of original art.  In hindsight, not a bad week.

It's really too bad that my wife likes four walls and a bed, because a guy could get used to this. When I wasn't couch surfing or tent camping, the truck was base camp. Complete with a plywood box that doubled as an art protector and back reallignment tool.
It’s really too bad that my wife likes four walls and a bed, because a guy could get used to this. When I wasn’t couch surfing or tent camping, the truck was base camp. Complete with a plywood box that doubled as an art protector and back realignment tool.

As an American citizen, however, I needed more.  Or…maybe I needed less. After that fish I chose not to return to Denver to sleep in my buddy’s climate controlled flat. I escaped from the traffic, grime, and buzz of another big city. I slept in the back of my truck, drinking in stars as thick as fat-walled trout.

* To check out Josh’s portfolio or purchase one of his sweet pieces, visit his website.

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Josh DeSmit is an obsessed artist and fly fisherman that fuses his affinity for street art, spray paint, and the outdoors to create one-of-a-kind mixed media pieces that are truly original in the art world. His unique brand aims to accentuate the chaos, detail, beauty, and desperation that results from the young fly fisher feeding in the film between urban and rural, school and work, love and a beer.

Josh has graciously agreed to share his stories of trials, tribulations, and jubilations as he tries to make it as a full-time outdoor artist.

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