Stalking the SEAM: It sounds like photography is your passion and your profession, can you give us some background on how that evolved. Where does fishing fit in? How did you make the leap from wedding and portrait photography to shooting fishing?
Rob Yaskovic: I worked at a camera shop when I was 19 going to community college part time. The camera shop had a great owner who allowed us a free roll of processing a week. Back then I shot quite a few rolls of 36 exposures every week. I had set up a darkroom in the basement of the store and Garry, the owner would let me stay late and work in the darkroom. I went to work as a staff photographer for the New Jersey Herald to replace a lady on maternity leave and ended up staying for 5 years.
I never wanted to be a wedding photographer. Every wedding photographer I saw or met was angry, sweating profusely, wearing a tux that was too small and had TONS of equipment. But that changed when I learned I could do it my way. Relaxed, having fun, one camera a few lenses and brides and grooms that were just as laid back.
There was no leap to fishing photography. I love making photos. I always have a camera with me. At first it was my iPhone 3Gs then I started to receive some recognition for what I was doing with that cell phone. The Nikon came along right behind it. With almost anything I am into, my camera finds its way. Early on Cameron Mortenson from The Fiberglass Manifesto, Dave Imbach from Lo Fi Fly, and my buddy Eric Hornung from Anti Hero Electric Tattoo helped with tons of support. Then came a little write up on Le Mouching, then a feature in This is Fly, then I get an email from Copi Vojta at The Fly Fish Journal and its just exploded.
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Umpqua has announced that Josh Graffam will be joining the company beginning on April 15, 2014. Graffam brings his extensive angling experience to Umpqua where he will take the role of Key Account and International Account Manager. Graffam, a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, began his professional angling career as a Guide at Jack Dennis Sports for six years. He then became Head Guide at The Ranch at Rock Creek, and has spent the past 3 years as the Activities Director of Brush Creek Ranch in Saratoga, Wyoming.
“We’re thrilled to have such a talented and knowledgeable individual joining the Umpqua team. We are confident that Josh will apply his talents, experience and competitive spirit to his new position and will undoubtedly help us grow and excel in some key areas.”
— Jeff Fryhover, President and CEO, Umpqua Feather Merchants
Graffam is a current member of Fly Fishing Team USA and is the 2013 National Champion—ranking him number one in the nation among competitive fly anglers. Additionally, Graffam finished 13th in the World Fly Fishing Championship this past year and will be representing the U.S. again in Czech Republic at the end of May.
“I am excited to be joining a company with such a distinguished history and innovative approach within the world of fly fishing. I honestly believe that Umpqua has some of the most talented people in the industry, and I am eager to be a part of their team.”
— Josh Graffam
Deep Water Cay’s Biggest Bonefish Ever Caught: Guide Shares Client Story from the Field
Almost daily, we receive emails with “10 pound bonefish” or “double-digit monster” in the subject line. The contents of the email always allude to a fish that supposedly surpassed that mystical benchmark every aspiring trophy seeker is looking to add to their list of achievements. Lively follow-up emails and banter almost always ensues, especially if the picture comes from a good friend or client. It can get quite comical at times.
We received an image over the weekend from our good friends at Deep Water Cay on Grand Bahama Island that made everyone here in our Saltwater Department go “WOW.” It’s a photo of Meko, a long-tenured and often requested guide at Deep Water Cay, holding a 14.6 lb. bonefish.
He told us it was the largest he has seen caught on a fly in his 18 years of guiding. Jim E., hailing from Houston, was the astute angler who landed the behemoth bone.