How and when did you get into taxidermy?
Before I was professionally trained in 2010, I had done a few beginners workshops as a hobby down in London and before that I was self taught! I would find deceased animals near my parents house in Northumberland countryside and in the city and practice the basic techniques or even just clean them up to study their bones and skulls. I always had an amazing interest in anatomy and natural history from a young age.
Where did you learn?
I have been trained by master taxidermist Mike Gadd in bird and mammal taxidermy, along with other touring taxidermists. From there I trained and self taught myself. There are no formal qualifications in taxidermy, a love for animals and a passion for your interests helps the learning process.
How much are your classes?
Classes vary in price depending on the specimen and the skill of tutoring in the class. Taster taxidermy classes range from 3 to 6 hours. Entomology and art/crafts classes range from 1 to 3 hours. Please take a look at our class timetable on our website to see all pricing and dates. You can also contact us directly if you are interested in a certain workshop.
Where do you get the animals from?
All of Moth Studios specimens used in classes and in works are responsibly and legally obtained. All animals have been donated or found once they have passed. The animals come from aviaries, road kill, pet stores, pest control, natural deaths in the wild and sometimes pets. We do not violate any legal laws nor do we support anyone who practices this. Moth is licensed to hold, taxidermy and sell certain protected species commercially. We have been a taxidermist for under 10 years, which feels like a long time, however, are quite happy to say that there are more highly skilled professional taxidermists out there such as the people I got trained off! And we are happy to pass you onto a more skilled taxidermist for more valuable jobs if need be!
Moth Studios has the upmost respect for animals, in life and after death and this is a priority in our constitution. We try not to use the word “ethical” as this has many different meanings and points of view to most people. For us, its the beauty, respect and preservation of an animal that we can study during the taxidermy process and admire for years once its been mounted. Butterfly, moth, beetles, bugs & insect specimens are obtained from sustainable sources. Stock received is from responsible breeders from the Lepidopterist Breeders Association, and donations from natural deaths in the wild.
What is your favourite thing to work on?
I love bird taxidermy. This is what I focus on the most. I find bird taxidermy to be more aesthetically pleasing, the anatomy of birds is astonishing and the creativity that comes with preparing your mount can be so much fun. I take a lot of inspiration from various forms, such as the natural world, sitting and watching birds go about their day and a lot of contemporary inspiration comes from modern artists and couture fashion designers such as Alexander McQueen, who in turn used a took a lot of inspiration from the natural world in his sculptural runway pieces.
I sometimes get requests to preserve some amazing specimens too. Recently, I was asked to mount an albino mole, which I was very excited about as they are extremely rare! The percentage of albino moles in a population of 40 million is 0.001%, which equates to 400 albino moles in the UK. He turned out great! You can see my post on him on my Instagram feed.
Terms & conditions
No video or audio footage is to be recorded during a workshop. Please feel free to take as many photographs as you like.
Moth Studios is a self employed small business, so when it comes to cancellations on classes, we can’t offer any refunds or exchanges as valuable time and stock has already went into prior management of these events. We hope you can understand the time it takes to arrange and plan such events. So please make sure you are able to attend before purchase! The same applies to our shop items, please make sure you are definitely sure on your decision before purchase and you read our terms and conditions below.
If you wish to purchase a gift voucher at a custom price, please get in touch with us via email email@example.com
All gift vouchers are redeemable for 12 months after purchase date. To redeem your voucher on shop items or to book onto a workshop, please email us via firstname.lastname@example.org and we will sort you out direct from there. Vouchers can only be used once, and must have a valid name and code (Moth Studios has a record of all purchase dates along with your unique code).
- No refunds or exchanges on shop items
- No refunds or exchanges on class tickets
- Free postage in the UK
- If you are purchasing from outside of the UK, you will receive an additional email from us with a breakdown of the additional calculated postage costs to your country. If we don’t receive the payment within 24 hours of you’re order, we will refund the order, under the assumption you don’t want to pay for the postage costs.
- We post orders within 1-2 working days of payment being received.
- We mainly use Royal mail or parcel force for our post service/couriers
- Items are posted tracked and signed