Each year, Oklahoma sportsmen and women have the option to have their hunting and fishing licenses printed on a collectible license card that features the work of a local wildlife artist. The license cards are durable and waterproof, and cost just $6.
The newest set of cards feature a white bass and a mallard drake painted by Stratford artist Shea Meyer. While the collectible license option has been available for the last five years, 2023 marks the first year that the Wildlife Department has commissioned a local artist specifically for the purpose of producing original paintings for the program.
It didn't take long for us to realize Meyer was the right artist for this inaugural commissioned project.
Not only has he been a runner up in the agency's annual waterfowl stamp design contest the last two years; he also won the contest in 2014. That contest is judged by a panel of wildlife professionals, and the artists' names are withheld until judging is completed. Meyer's work managed to bubble to the top in each one, capturing the attention of the state's most scrutinizing waterfowl experts and proving time and again his attention to detail and skills at portraying wildlife. Not only that, he’s a lifetime license holder, outdoorsman, and educator at Stratford schools. He is an accomplished outdoorsman and a supporter of conservation.
Meyer said he feels honored to have his work featured on the new cards.
"I was excited to find out the Wildlife Department wanted me to paint a mallard since waterfowl is such a big part of my subject-matter, and I could not wait to paint a white bass, Oklahoma's state fish!" he said. "I am a proud Oklahoman, and I am honored to have my work represent our state and it's amazing wildlife."
The new cards are available now, with space for up to nine licenses and privileges to be printed on the backside. A portion of the sale of each card is designated for marketing and outreach efforts aimed at recruiting, retaining and reactivating lapsed hunters and anglers -- important because the Department relies on hunting and fishing license sales for funding the work it does for wildlife. Additionally, Meyer's original paintings will be framed and donated to the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Foundation (OWCF) to be auctioned at one of its upcoming events. The OWCF is a nonprofit organization formed to work exclusively alongside and provide support for the Wildlife Department. The proceeds from the auction will be used to further benefit conservation efforts in Oklahoma.
The program is a win-win-win for wildlife, the Wildlife Department, and local artists whose work is showcased. The Department hopes to continue commissioning artists for the effort going forward.
To get your hunting or fishing licenses printed on one of the newest collectible cards featuring Meyer's work, login to your Go Outdoors Oklahoma profile and go to "Purchase Licenses." If you already have a current hunting or fishing license, you can purchase your card from the License Catalog. Or, you can add your collectible card to your purchase when you buy your license.