Bob Cook

Wood Carved Decoys

Bob Cook is a native Georgian who began carving and painting wildfowl 35 years ago. His father, Clarence, was an accomplished cabinet maker while his brother Nick is world renowned as a master wood turner and wood turning instructor.

Bob has studied painting at the Atlanta College of Art and Colorado Mountain College and woodcarving at John Campbell Folk School. He has also studied with nationally recognized carvers such as Ernie Mills, Mike Mason and Ernie Muehlmatt. He specializes in carving and painting decorative waterfowl and shore birds.

Since retiring a few years back, Bob, Marsha and Oscar, their Bearded Collie, live in Aspen where Bob bikes, plays golf, carves birds and teaches alpine skiing.

Bob served in the Marine Corps and is a member of the Ward Foundation University and Museum at Salisbury and Colorado Ducks Unlimited.

Typically there are two basic uses for decoys, they either float, or are stick-ups, which means the birds are on sticks and are literally stuck into the ground. Most often, stick-ups are shore birds such as gulls, plovers, yellowlegs, dowitchers and sand pipers. Stick-ups are used in conjunction with floating decoys to give the floaters more credibility. Certain species of stick-ups used in this manner are also referred to as confidence decoys.

Decoys that are made with little to no feathering or detailing are known as “smoothies”. Decoys that float are referred to as “working birds” or, “shooting rigs”. Working birds are typically hollow with a keel and weights that allow them to self-right if blown over by wind or wave action.  The birds I make are decorative examples of decoys and stick-ups based on patterns from the early Delmarva carvers. Delmarva is an area encompassing Delaware, Maryland and Virginia which is in the heart of the Eastern Flyway.

View Bob Cook’s Work…

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