November 4, 2011
Hautman Wins Fourth Duck Stamp Contest
Joe Hautman's 2012-2013 winning Federal Duck Stamp entry.
Hautman's acrylic painting of a drake wood duck will be made into the 2012-2013 federal duck stamp. His painting was chosen over 189 entries from artists nationwide.
"You could say I have a soft spot for wood ducks," said Hautman, 55, of Plymouth. "I have wood duck boxes around my 10-acre lake, so I get to watch families of them grow up here."
Hautman says the sheer beauty of a drake wood duck makes the bird challenging to paint. "They're so colorful it's hard to get the detail just right," he said, noting his winning artwork took about three weeks to paint. "A lot more goes into it than the actual painting. I had most of the painting done in two days, then the rest is detail work. It's hard to know when to stop."
Hautman says he receives invaluable feedback on his work from brothers and fellow wildlife artists, Jim and Bob. In fact, the brothers Hautman have won 10 duck stamp competitions over the years. "We've been fortunate," said Joe Hautman, an avid waterfowl hunter.
The federal duck stamp sells for $15, the price of which has not changed since 1991. The stamp is required for all waterfowl hunters and raises about $25 million annually to conserve wetlands habitat.
Adam Grimm of Burbank, S.D., placed second with an oil painting of a single gadwall. Grimm is a previous contest winner, with his work appearing on the 2000-2001 federal duck stamp. Richard Clifton of Milford, Del., who has also won the contest, took third with an acrylic painting of a pair of mallards.
Since 1934, sales of federal duck stamps have helped purchase roughly 6 million acres of wildlife habitat for the National Wildlife Refuge System, many of which are open to hunting, fishing, birding and photography.
"We need to promote the federal duck stamp as much as possible," said Hautman. "Each purchase helps conserve critical habitat for ducks and many other bird species."
--- Tori J. McCormick