Diamond Tooth Taxidermy

Exquisite Taxidermy Art and Design

© 2013 Diamond Tooth Taxidermy
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About Beth Beverly

I am a State and Federally licensed taxidermist who graduated from the Pocono Institute of Taxidermy in 2010 with high marks. I have a deep respect for this craft and those who strive to preserve it.

It is my pleasure to work on any trophy mount, be it a shoulder, life-size, rug, or fish.

I accept custom orders for fantasy mounts, wearables, and bridal hair pieces.

Sculptural mounts and hats are available for rental provided they are in stock at time of inquiry.

Contact me describing your wish and I will be delighted to make it so.

Diamond Tooth Taxidermy Blog:

"You're bein' too feminine with it."

Today I finished skinning my fox, and de-greased/fleshed the pelt.  Here's a pile of some of the scraped out residue:

That oblong red object in the center would be a fox penis.

I chose a mount in a supine position with one leg curled under its body. This made sewing up the legs a little tricky, but I was up for the challenge.  Unfortunately I was taking too much time and my instructor was getting on me about it, reminding me of the perils of lolly-gagging with skin.

I managed to get him sewn up almost all the way, and had to store him in a cool spot overnight.  I really need to pick up the pace.

My thoughts drifted a lot today as I wrestled with my moral boundaries, and where I'm comfortable setting them.  I hate that fur-bearing animals, like fox, mink, racoon and possum, are typically caught in traps.  It breaks my heart to imagine  this creature snagged by the neck or paw, waiting for the trapper to come finish it off.  I see so much roadkill everyday and am repeatedly thankful for the millions of happy accidents that placed me in the life I have today, as a human, on top of the food  chain, living my dream and doing it quite comfortably.  I silently apologise and thank each animal I skin, imagining a different scenario in which I as a human would be out for a stroll and then snap-my foot is caught in a trap and I wait around for two, four, maybe ten hours before something comes along with a giant rock to break my back.  Or if I was sitting in my living room one day and some mammoth space craft landed right on top of my home, crushing it and my family. The thing is, I love taxidermy.  And I am really, really, good at it.  I don't want to stop.  And I am okay with they fact that death is part of the circle of life.  I just have to figure out where to set my moral boundaries in terms of justifying killing.  I think as long as I face it head-on, and am honest with myself about the fact that this isn't a pretty craft, and as long as I remain thankful and appreciate the fact that what I do costs lives, I'll be on the right track.

When I got home I finished watching "This is it."  It was decent, as far s the dancing and how involved a production the whole thing was, but I found it creepy watching MJ dance suggestively with women.

"Beth Beverly, the diamond-toothed acrobatic taxidermist"

Today was my birthday and I was greeted by a thawed out dead squirrel holding a card for me at my work station.  Also, Mr. B gifted me some paint brushes.  Pretty neat. Unfortunately I forgot my camera so I have no images of today's activities.  My squirrel mount will be in a dead pose, kind of draped over a tree limb.

I skinned my squirrel, which was absolutely filled with beebees-I stopped counting at ten- and managed to get the skin stretched over the form but that's as far as I got.  I enjoy the process too much, I think, and tend to move very slowly.  The other student had her mount almost completely finished by the day's end.

I'm getting antsy to break out a little and incorporate some artistic flare into my mounts,; these conventional ones are really boring me.  I keep reminding myself that I'm here to build a solid foundation of skills which I can then apply to the most fantastic and unbelievable mounts the world has ever seen.  For now I just need to keep towing the line.

I got home to an empty cabin, and felt a little lonely.  I haven't spent a birthday all by myself since I turned 21.  I took a nap and then ate dinner while watching "Little Ashes".  It's the most touching movie I've seen in ages.  What really impressed me was the wardrobe.  Men dressed so well back then and the clothes were all tailored impeccably. So much attention to detail; a time when people didn't rush.  Time was taken to do things right.


My favorite ensembles are featured in this scene, which is too charming for words:

Day Four

Today I skinned and stuffed my second pheasant, putting it in a closed (standing, wings shut) mount.  After skinning and removing all bits of fat and flesh, I gave it a bath.  Here it is drying.

After the bath the skin gets tumbled in sawdust for about five minutes and then dried and fluffed with a hair dryer.  I had a little more trouble working the wires through the legs of this guy, but again I am pleased with the result.  I am hoping that over time my speed improves, however; I feel like molasses every time I look over and see the other student about four or five steps ahead of me.  Thankfully she smokes so she can go outside and rest while I catch up.

The feathers are set with plastic wrap and my eye mistakes fixed with pins for now.  Later on I will create a proper environment for him to occupy, with reeds and moss, etc.

Later on we learned how to use our airbrush kits; I am not taking to it as easily as I'd like.  Once I master the control factor though, I should be golden.  After we had the basics down, we gave a bit of color to some duck feet and even painted some artificial Mallard heads!

I went home nad worked on my hoop, then ran errands and tidied up the cabin.  Afterwards I fixed myself a martini and watched "The Mother", which took two more martinis to undue the trauma inflicted upon me by the sheer unexpected and shocking content

Day Two

We started the day off skinning deer heads; the two which belonged to the other student in fact.  We put the capes in the back room, salted them, and left them in a pile with the other skins to be sent to the tannery.

We then began working on our own pheasants.  Mr. B gasses the pheasants so the skin and feathers remain flawless, but it renders the meat inedible.  I'm dealing with the guilt of knowing this animal died just so I could make art out of it, and nothing more.  My morals are somewhat compromised but it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make for this education.  As I scrape meat off the bird skull with my fingernails, the smell of Dead permeates my nose and I force myself to like it.  I've never been too intimate with my meat, and in the past I've only used scalpels to cut specimen-never my bare hands.  I try to drink coffee while I work in a bizarre attempt to condition my stomach.  We learned today that when a skin isn't fleshed out and salted quickly enough the rot takes over and it really starts to stink.  These capes are called "spooks" and will taint the other skins.

Mr. B calls me "girl" when he comes by to check on my progress, always with a smile.  I think he has a soft spot for young women, particularly those who are easy on the eyes, so I embrace it.  I'll even be so bold as to say I might remind him just a bit of his granddaughter, whom is the apple of his eye.  He's also generous with the positive feedback which, in a scholastic setting, I am not accustomed to.

I rigged up my hoop in the barn when I got home, so I can practice aerials during the week.  Plus, I'm nowhere near a gym and the terrain isn't ideal for running outdoors, so this will basically be my sole source ofexcercise.  Unfortunately by the time I figured out what beam to use as a rigging point, and how to get up there, then actually hung it, it was too dark to use.  I went inside and did some yoga in front of a fire insteadwhile I watched "Donkey Skin" on DVD.  It's the only movie I brought up with me, and it has inspired me to only speak seulement en francais while I'm alone in the cabin with the cats.
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