Artist Exposé – Martin Simpson

Our Artist Exposé continues to provide exposure to a wide variety of fly-related artists. It is with great pleasure that we introduce you to the amazing talents of New Zealand artist and fly fisherman – Martin Simpson. His work truly encapsulates a realism that is could easily be mistaken for a living thing, with detailing that is simply mind-blowing…

Q1 12.5lb

Do you fly fish and if so, what is your favourite species to catch?

I love fly fishing for trout, especially big browns. I am so fortunate that my parents moved to New Zealand while I was a child, long before they knew I would end up a passionate trout fisherman. Fishing up a wild crystal clear river admiring the green pools and sparkling runs is hard to beat. I think everything about trout fishing is beautiful – the venue, the equipment, the movement of the fly line, and the fish themselves. Angler portrait

What is your favourite subject to paint or draw?

As a professional illustrator I draw and paint many things, but I enjoy drawing and painting trout the most. It is a never-ending process of trying to better capture the beauty of the real thing. Trying to capture, in a moment, the sparkle and shine, the gloss and iridescence of a living, moving fish is a real challenge.

Q3 trout

Tell us about your greatest inspiration?

Creation is my greatest inspiration, but I also enjoy seeing how other artists try to  depict it. Having taught art for many years I have come to love so many artists from the old masters to more modern masters and even some concept artists. Some names – Harry Anderson, Raymond Ching and Drew Struzan.

Q6 Rainbow

Your ideal fly-fishing destination?

New Zealand! For sight fishing to large wild brown trout in an unspoiled environment with relatively little fishing pressure, NZ is probably unbeatable.


Where would you locate your dream studio and whom would you invite around for a drink or chat?

I think my ideal studio would be somewhere in the South Island of New Zealand. I love great views of the mountains, the bush, and rivers. It would also be near great fishing. Who would I invite around? Friends, and anyone who would like to become friends.

Q5 rainbow

Would you get a tattoo of your own work?

No, I believe my body belongs to God so it’s not mine to mark.

Where can we purchase your work?

The best place for people to get in contact with me is via my website, which shows a little of what I have done

I have original art for sale and many of my paintings are available as prints.

Most of my paintings have been commissioned life-sized portraits of trophy fish. Angler’s catch and release a trophy fish, send me the photographs, and I paint them a life size, anatomically accurate portrait of their fish.

Thank you for featuring me on your site among a group of really good artists.

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