stripe decor

Fish Decoy Net's


Carver of the Year


Dale E. Claus

Artist, Collector, Carver

Fish Decoys Net - Carver's Spotlight

November 2007

Fish Decoys Net Carver Spotlight


Dale was selected in November 2007 as the Fish Decoys Net Carver of the Month and now Fish Decoys Net has selected him to be the 2008 Carver of the Year for Fish Decoys Net. His artist skills that over the past few years was passed on to numerous other carvers both young and older. Dale started carving fish decoys in 2005 and collaborates with other established and not so established carvers. He revitalized a nice tradition of co-making decoys where a carver would carve and he would paint and each of these had a artistic look that would enhance any collector's shelves. Yes they could swim. He has collaborated with Jeff Gontarek, Trevor Barry, Tim Stouffer, Adam Sena, Bevy Williams, Anthony Grandbois and Rich Thayer. Now that was a very aggressive undertaking on one who started carving in 2005.

Congratulation to Dale from Fish Decoys Net.


Dale is from Columbus, Ohio and was born in 1950.

Check out Dale's website see many more of his decoys and art.

Dale is an artist and collector of everything, likes going to Brazil where he collects art and music, plays tennis and badminton, and makes paintings with his retired Brazilian friend, Tais Passarelli. He is a self-taught artist, and began making drawings in 1964 and watercolor paintings in 1971.

Dale works with many carvers where they will carve and he will paint the decoys. He works with newer or younger carvers and as an artist he helps them see the fish decoy as a medium for a higher level of art.

He was born July 12, 1950 in Barnesville, Ohio. He grew up on a farm in eastern Ohio where he enjoyed hunting and fishing and sports, and graduated from Skyvue High School, Graysville, Ohio in 1968.

He worked for land surveyors during the summers of 1967 and 1968. Worked full time for land surveyors in 1969 and 1970.
He enlisted in US Army in 1970 and went to Vietnam for 15 months serving as an Artillery Surveyor, Forward Observer, and Chauffeur for commanding officers. After returning from the Army he moved to Columbus, Ohio where he lives and works.

In 1973 he started making metal sculpture and metal garden fountains, selling professionally in local galleries and making commissions for commercial corporations. During this period he also worked part time for professional photographers for one year.

In 1975 he returned to work full time for civil engineers and started drafting with pen and ink making construction drawings and plats. He continued to make metal sculpture during this period.

>From 1980 to 1985 he worked part time as a professional Art Handler and Art Mover for a non-profit organization based Columbus, Ohio, moving art across the USA and Canada. This was an inspiring experience, seeing many exhibitions in galleries and museums, and meeting hundreds of artists. During this period he continued to make metal sculpture and produced many abstract and surreal paintings. He also started making craftsman style furniture.

In 1986 he returned to working for civil engineers doing drafting, research and composing legal descriptions, and continuing to make metal sculpture and paintings. In 1991 he married Susanne Gordon Naylor and their son Andrew was born. In 1994 he began doing drafting and designs using AutoCad and other computer software.

In 2000 he began making stained glass windows and lamps, and in 2002 he started making wood sculpture.
In January 2005 he began collecting ice fishing decoys, and soon began making them with a lot of advice and inspiration from the carvers that he collects. He also collaborates with Jeff Gontarek from Erhard, MN to make decoys. The influence of his long involvement with art can be seen in his decoys.



This just came in to my personal collection

This is a whimsical Buck Rogers Decoy

Measures 11.25" long and it combines wood, copper and brass and the paint work is all hand done. It is fully functional and signed and dated March 2006

Dale Claus Fish Decoy

Dale Eugene Claus

437 Glenmont Ave.

Columbus, Ohio 43214


Information & photos courtesy of Dale E. Claus

A Note from Dales Brother - in - Law  Guy Naylor



Last Updated on January 24, 2013 Janurary 1, 2009
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