Ben Miller is a fly fish painter. Not a painter of fish, or of fishing flies, or of fly-fishing anglers, but a painter who uses fly fishing equipment and techniques the way other artists use a brush or Jackson Pollock used a paint can.
Wielding a rod and reel, Miller casts what he calls “fly brushes” at plexiglass panels, whipping paint onto the canvas with astounding precision.
He’ll be demonstrating this unique fly cast painting method Sunday at the Chicago Riverwalk while creating a portrait of the Chicago River. The Montana-based Miller is in town for Expo Chicago, and is partnering with Friends of the Chicago River on Sunday’s event.
Rivers are Miller’s primary subject matter, and he typically paints along the banks of whatever waterway is his current inspiration.
For a glimpse of Miller at work, stop by the McCormick Bridgehouse and Chicago River Museum on the Riverwalk at Michigan Avenue, beginning at 10:30 a.m. Sunday. The finished painting will be revealed at 5 p.m.