Here is the reference photo and the resulting painting. I rotated both fish slightly to show their actual girth better. I also add some of the river int the background along with distant background trees as they look in the area to add to the authenticity of the memory.
Here's a good comparison of the faces in the photo and the resulting art. I used the two additional images below to help guide the details. This painting was done in a more impasto style which was perfectly suited to the story of the trip and the two anglers personalities.
Here you see details of the trophies. You can see details such as the black tones around the mouth and the teeth in the jaws. Salmon have a very tight scale pattern that can be almost chrome in appearance. Painting thousands of scales is tedious work and there are a multitude of ways to do this. I have an old piece of window screen that I have stretched in one direction. I lay this over the fish and use a homemade rag roller to push modified paint through the mesh. I let it set until it is tacky and pull the screen off. This gives me a perfect base pattern which I then detail over with a fine brush. It works great on salmon and saves me countless hours of painting scales individually.
Here's Dad. He had me add the no knot logo to his hat as they are both reps for the company.