MACHIAS, Maine — It all started when he was a very young man.
Tyler Durling’s interest in Pokemon and Yugio cards gave him the desire to draw. When he would look through his playing cards, he wanted more villains and heroes. So he got a pencil and began drawing new cards to add to his deck. He also wanted to make a coloring book, so he drew some pictures and later colored them in with his sister.
Now the 18-year-old, who lives in Wesley and is a senior at Washington Academy in Machias, has turned his talents to wildlife.
Last year he worked on a sketch of a wolf, one of his first serious attempts at animal drawing. Once completed, he began showing it to friends and family. They all told him to pursue this talent and he’s headed in that direction.
“That wolf is how I knew I was serious about drawing. I could see talent and I enjoy doing it,” said Durling. He saw a commercial on television about an art school and thought, “I can do that.” So he began drawing, a hobby shared by his family for generations. As a result, Durling this year was named “most artistic” senior at Washington Academy and he won first place in a Downeast Salmon Federation contest for his drawing of a bear with a salmon in its mouth.
The Downeast Salmon Federation will be presenting Durling his award and honoring other student art contest winners at a fish fry 4-5 p.m. Friday, April 20, at the Pleasant River Salmon Hatchery. For more information on that event, visit mainesalmonrivers.org.
Durling also has sold five of his drawings in the Washington County area and will be present at the Margaretta Days Festival 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 9 in Machias.