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The purpose of this letter is to provide a reference for Kevin Hockley and his team from Hockley Studios.
During the development of French River Provincial Park Visitor Centre, of which you may be aware, Kevin Hockley and his team were contracted to provide a wide variety of exhibit pieces for the galleries at the visitor centre.
Of particular note, were the landscapes and habitats which Mr. Hockley designed and fabricated. Kevin involved the Ontario Park's team at each step of the process, proving to be not only extremely creative in his approach, but also very flexible and accommodating in arriving at solutions responding to feedback which he received.
The landscapes, as with all of the exhibit pieces created by Hockley Studios, were beautiful and realistic in detail, approached creatively while maintaining their scientific accuracy. As well as other pieces produced, Kevin created a Georgian Bay habitat complete with fabricated bedrock, vegetation and wildlife - beautiful! He also created a beaver feed pile, complete with bronzed beaver sculpture, an underwater cultural heritage environment, and an imaginative underwater river environment that the visitor walks through. Each of these landscapes exhibits meticulous attention to detail and each is presented in a way that captures the visitor's imagination.
The pieces have proven to be of very high quality and extremely durable. If you have dropped in to the visitor centre you will know that the visitor experience provides a wide range of opportunities for tactile engagement. The exhibit pieces constructed by Hockley Studios have stood up exceptionally well over the years.
I would not hesitate to recommend the work of Kevin Hockley and his team. Ontario Parks was very happy with the entire process, and continues to enjoy extremely favourable comments from our visitors who continue to be delighted and inspired by the exhibits and their stories.
I would be pleased to answer any questions you might have regarding Ontario Parks' experience with Kevin Hockley / Hockley Studios. I can be reached at (705) 773-4256, or email@example.com.
Resource Liaison Specialist
MNR Parry Sound District
It is my pleasure to provide this letter regarding the quality of services performed by Kevin Hockley of Hockley Studios. Over the past decade, the studio has been our preferred taxidermist and diorama maker for a range of projects including:
- over 100 taxidermy mounted specimens including small birds, flying mounted specimens and large mammals
- cast replicas of fish, reptiles and amphibians
- large dioramas of ecosystems
Hockley Studios played a key role in the production of natural history exhibits in our $7 million national park visitor centre in Tobermory (opened in 2006). We chose Hockley Studios because of the realistic, high archival quality of work and reputation as the finest taxidermist in Ontario. We are fully satisfied with their work and will continue to use their services.
If you wish to further discuss our experience working with Hockley Studios, please feel free to contact me
Media & Exhibit Coordinator
Bruce Peninsula National Park
Fathom Five National Marine Park
120 Chi sin tib dek Road, Tobermory, ON, N0H 2R0
Phone: 519-596-2233 x 240
I have had the privilege of working with Hockley Studios for over 12 years. As the manager of the Algonquin Provincial Park Visitor Centre, I currently maintain and enhance the natural and cultural displays of this museum which annually receives over 180,000 visitors.
Hockley Studios was instrumental in 1993 in the fabrication of the natural history gallery including the taxidermied mounts as well as the diorama displays (plants, trees, water, etc.). The quality of the work is outstanding and the natural history exhibits are often considered to be one of the finest in Canada.
We have had the opportunity improve and enhance the displays over the years and Hockley Studios has been the only company we have dealt with. We have added several new dioramas and added new species to existing displays. The professionalism, quality of work and attention to detail are exemplary.
Several years ago we rebuilt our fish tanks and Hockley Studios suggested that instead of a painted drywall wall surrounding the tanks, a rock wall that already existed could be extended and incorporated around the new tank. Hockley studios completed this outstanding work and the result was a realistic, rock exhibit that blended seamlessly into the existing display. Although the fish tanks are meant to be the focus of the exhibit, the rock wall is a truly impressive complement!
I have no hesitation in recommending Hockley Studios for any work. They are professional, high-quality exhibit fabricators, taxidermists, and artists. If you are looking for top-of-the-line work, Hockley Studios will deliver.
Chief Park Naturalist
Algonquin Provincial Park
...Kevin did most of the taxidermy for the outstanding world class dioramas in the Algonquin Park Visitor Centre.
He also personally created, or supervised the creation of, virtually all the foreground objects in these dioramas. These included casting realistic artificial objects such as tree trunks and rocks, preserving natural materials such as shrubs, moss and trees (including coniferous foliage), the creation of bird nestlings, water lily flowers, aquatic vegetation, realistic ripples on artificial water surfaces and a full sized beaver lodge and dam (both cross-sectioned to show internal structure.)
In all these endeavors Kevin showed an astonishing resourcefulness, ingenuity and devotion to creating the most realistic effect possible. He was also excellent as a supervisor and inspired leader working with people having no experience in these areas, and succeeding in having them produce marvelous results and to take great pride in their work.
I have no hesitation in expressing my unqualified admiration for Kevin’s talent and abilities or in recommending him for any project for which he might be considered in these areas.
Chief Park Naturalist
Algonquin Park District
...Kevin did a wonderful job producing and installing 3 dioramas and a variety of fiberglass models for the Begich, Boggs Visitor Center in the Chugach National Forest in Alaska. As Visitor Center Director it was my responsibility to act as Project Manager for the design and creation of these new exhibits, and so I interacted with Kevin directly from January through September of 2001.
Throughout the entire process I found that working with Kevin was an enjoyable and rewarding experience. Kevin was very easy to work with and good at creative problem solving when necessary. All of his work was of a very high quality, which continues to stand the test of times.
Every day members of the public tell us that our Visitor Center exhibits are the nicest they have ever seen on a National Forest, which is truly a reflection of the quality of Kevin’s work. As a result I do not hesitate to recommend Kevin Hockley to anyone seeking model-making firm to so similar work. Should you have any questions for me, just give me a call. I can be reached at: 907-754-2316.
Lezlie L. Murray
Visitor Center Director
Department of Agriculture
P.O. Box 129
Forest Station Road
Girdwood, AK 99587