Two artists have won top honors in the state’s Waterfowl and Trout Stamp art contests. A painting of a pintail duck and a golden retriever by Daniel Allard, of Marengo, Ohio, will be on the 2018-19 Delaware waterfowl stamp; and a painting of a brook trout by Eric Jablonowski, of Suwanee, Georgia, will be on the 2018 Delaware trout stamp.
The paintings won top honors in the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s annual stamp art competition, held April 8 at the Delaware Ducks Unlimited Greenwing Event at Owens Station Shooting Sports & Hunter Education Center near Greenwood. The competition drew 22 entries for the 2018-19 waterfowl stamp and 11 entries for the 2018 trout stamp. The contest specified that submitted artwork must include a pintail duck and a golden retriever.
Allard received a $2,500 prize and 150 artist’s proofs of the limited edition print series of his first-place entry. A graduate of the Columbus College of Art & Design and an outdoorsman, Allard uses his artwork to help promote wildlife conservation and to help contribute to wildlife habitat and research. After leaving the commercial art world in 2006 to become a stay-at-home father, he began combining his love of art and wildlife in his paintings. He is a four-time Ducks Unlimited Sponsor Artist in various states and recently won the 2018-19 Ohio Wetland Habitat Stamp Contest.
Jablonowski received $250 and retained the rights to reproduce and sell prints of the stamp. Having sold his first wildlife drawing at age 7, Jablonowski discovered his love of the outdoors and his artistic talent at an early age. He grew up in the western Pennsylvania countryside and credits a childhood spent exploring fields and forests for his ability painting fine details. He started with pencil drawings and moved on to oil pastels and other mediums. He works primarily in oil paints. His creative process involves spending time outdoors observing wildlife anatomy, habitats and the properties of lighting. The first time Jablonowski entered the contest in 2010, he won second place; this year is his second entry.
Other winners included:
— 2018-19 waterfowl stamp: second place, Garrett Jacobs, Orlando, Florida; third place, Paul Makuchal, Pocomoke, Maryland; and honorable mentions, Diane Ford, Bethesda, Maryland; Ron Kleiber, Erin, New York; and Caleb Metrich, Lake Tomahawk, Wisconsin.
— 2018 trout stamp: second place, George Bradford, Georgetown, brown trout; third place, Donnie Hughes, Lexington, South Carolina, brook trout; and honorable mentions George Bradford, Georgetown, rainbow trout; Broderick Crawford, Clayton, Georgia, brown trout; and Jonathan Milo, Monroe, Connecticut, rainbow trout.
The winning 2018-19 Delaware waterfowl stamp will be available July 1, 2018, and the winning 2018 Delaware trout stamp will be available Jan. 1, 2018.
Waterfowl and trout stamp entries are on display through April 24 at the Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, 2591 Whitehall Neck Road, Smyrna. Hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. For information, call 653-9345.