This month, Texas wildlife lost Bubba Wood. He was more than instrumental in bringing the bobwhite back from the brink. If you didn't know him, you missed out. I was not close to Bubba, but he changed the trajectory of my life. For one, he encouraged me to paint bobwhite quail. I mentioned to him an interest in these birds, and the next week, a box of books on bobwhites arrived at my door. Bubba was just that way. He critiqued in his colorful manner and always shot straight. He was generous with his time to quail and to art.
His gallery, Collectors Covey, hosted a terrific miniature show each year. If your painting was not good, it went to the back of the gallery. If it was really bad, it got placed behind the liquor bar on a wall of shame. But if he thought it was outstanding, it was placed in the center beside a David Shepherd or Bob Kuhn. You always knew where you stood with Bubba. That alone is invaluable to an artist. For better or for worse, I experienced it all, from behind the bar to center stage. In hindsight, it was all good because it made me assess my work. After he sold Collectors Covey, we sat down for lunch to ruminate over art, wildlife, and life. It was a really good day. His exterior masked a generous and kind man. I won't go on as it wouldn't sit right with Bubba. I just know he is missed by many. RIP