Don’t you hate it when you see a painting or statue of a leaping marlin or a toothy wahoo which stops you dead in your tracks and makes you drool with pleasure — until you see the price tag, and realize it costs as much as an outboard engine? Bummer. But don’t give up hope. There’s some very cool fish art out there which is being created by up-and-comers who don’t have a mega-bucks reputation yet, so it’s a lot easier to afford.

are for fishermen

This appropriately named Badass Bonefish is a leaping striper and costs less than you might think.

I found one example at, of all places, the Pasadena Fishing Expo. Most of the booths held spreader bars, umbrella rigs, and bucktails, but way out back I spotted Badass Bonefish. These wood creations are sportfish skeletons carved from wood and finished in oil-based polyurethane. They are drop-dead gorgeous, yet they cost just $125 a linear foot (you can order them in all sizes, up to five or six feet long).

kaufmans metal works art

This tuna won't make your drag scream — but it's as pleasing to the eye as the real thing.

Another way-cool creation comes from a welder-turned-artist, in the form of metal game fish. Kaufman’s Metal Art fish seem to jump off the wall in a drag-screaming run, and when I saw these things I just had to have one. Well, actually, I had to order three. But since his prices run in the low hundreds, it was easy to afford.

Yeah, my house does look something like the inside of an aquarium. Sure, my wife gets irked now and again by the slightly excessive display of sportfish — not to mention the rods and reels lining the walls, lures hanging off the ceiling, and a dusty pair of oyster tongs leaning in a corner of the living room. But hey, at least I didn’t have to spend megabucks to turn my home into an artsy-looking fishatorium. And you don’t have to, either.