Pickens, Matthew – Witt, Illinois

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Matthew Pickens is from Witt, Illinois and was born in 1972.

Matt is an avid fisherman. He believes that when it comes to fishing there is nothing better and when he is not fishing, he is thinking about fishing, and when he is thinking, it’s about what to carve. Matt said “Preferably to catch my next “wall hanger”, or to help someone else catch, or spear theirs!!”

Matt goes on an informs me that and I quote him ” I think it is a great honor for me to be able to share my passion for the outdoors with others. I am rather new to the art of fish decoys. But I put my heart and soul into every piece. I do not use any template or patterns. Every one of my decoys are different, even if they are very similar. I can’t make one exactly as another one. i have many ideas and visions that have yet to be “born”. I do not really have a mentor on carving; my grandfather passed away while I was a child, and my father passed away when i was 15. He was 44.”

“I do however have two mentors in the art of fishing, and the outdoors. My mother is one of the main reasons I love fishing. she smiles so big, even when its a tiny blue-gill on the end of her line!! She actually would come and take me out of school, so we could go to Carlyle lake and fish for the “million dollar crappie” in the “crappiethon”. We celebrate every mothers day fishing. As long as i can remember she has been taking me fishing. Now when we fish, we compete every time. And she is a the best catfisherman i have ever seen!!!”

Matt went on to say ” My other fishing mentor would be my Uncle Lin Dail. He is who introduced me to jig fishing. and the first to take me trout fishing. He has been a big influence in my life, even before my father passed away. Every time we talk it’s about fish

in. The man is an endless well of fishing information!!! “
Matt summarize by stating, ” Learning to carve, took a lot of time, effort, mistakes, and cuts to the hands. And I’m sure that I have allot more mistakes and cuts coming my way.
All my decoys are finished with clear finish even if they are painted first. this will ensure water resistance. A lot of my decoys are cedar, because i love the outstanding natural colors of this wood. I also make some of diamond wood and some of oak. Any sort of wood is possible to show up on my eBay list.

Matt informed me that he had never entered a contest for carving. So he does not really know how i would do in them, but he said ” I will tell you this, When you can make a piece of wood “swim”, YOU HAVE WON A CONTEST!!!!””

You can contact Matthew at:
Matthew Pickens
221 West Allen Ave.
Witt, Illinois 62094
email to: mattsmyboy2@yahoo.com

Fishcritter’s note: I have one of Matthew’s decoys in my personal collection (the bird at the top) and his quality of carving rates right at the top of quality – I will watch his carving growth with interest. Keep up the good work Matthew.

Information and photos provided by Matthew Pickens (3/06)

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