A Customer’s Review of Animal Artistry — “I Was Blown Away!”

At one time, international hunter Scott Thompson was under the common misconception to which many hunters fall victim — the belief that taxidermy performed in the countries they hunt is the key to beautiful, well-priced trophies. After a series of disappointing mounts, Scott found Animal Artistry — for him, a local company. It was the beginning of an eye-opening experience.

Scott Thompson

Quality and Creativity

Like many hunters, Scott was familiar with Animal Artistry advertisements and their displays at various trade shows. In his early hunting years, he traveled across Western United States to hunt, and many of the outfitters did their own taxidermy. In 2006, he started hunting internationally and assumed having taxidermy work done in the countries from which he harvested was the best strategy for high quality work at an affordable price. Unfortunately, he was disappointed time and time again. Finally, he opted to dip and pack. “Good thing the outfitter had copies of Safari Magazine,” Scott says. “I showed them the back cover and said, ‘send it here!’ ”

When his trophy hides and horns arrived from Cameroon, Scott came to the shop. “I really didn’t know what to expect as I had never interacted with a taxidermy service at this level,” he says. “I went to the studio to discuss with Stewart how to I might want the mounting done. When he laid out the hides, I thought this is going to look like s**t. But he reassured me what I was seeing was usual and customary.” Stewart took Scott on a tour of the shop and began sharing design options and considerations based on Scott’s space requirements. As an avid hunter with 67 mounts at home and at work, space is at premium. “It was an eye opening experience for me,” says Scott. “I chose options and designs that would work for me, and the cost was no more than what I would have paid for individual mounts in Africa, especially when factoring in the shipping and import clearance costs.”

Scott’s experience was positive from beginning to end. “I got some progress photos as time when on,” he says, “but when the work was done — far faster than I thought possible — and the final product was delivered to my home and set up, I was blown away! The quality and presentation were amazing!”

A Different Experience

With his experience hunting around the world and having mounts created by multiple taxidermists, Scott is in a unique position to offer an educated perspective. “Most taxidermy is still life,” he explains. “But what I got from Animal Artistry was integrated with a snippet of environmental reality that brings back active memories every time I view it. It brought different species together that blended my experience. There are no child-like plastic plants in the mouth of these mounts — they’re integrated with real vegetation that simulates well what is in that native country.”

The difference is clear not just to Scott, but to anyone who has the pleasure of seeing his trophies. “Out of country, I was given choices A, B, C, or D,” he says. “When asked for E, I got that — but an F product. Animal Artistry has introduced me to an alphabet that I didn’t know existed until recently. ’Nuff said.”

Scott hopes others learn from his mistakes. “We all want to save money, control expenses so we can hunt more,” he says. “I learned the hard way that I did not save any money on overseas taxidermy — but I did sacrifice quality. I have a great appreciation now, that when I give a concept and constraint to Animal Artistry, their creativity will make a super star production.”