After watching hundreds of fly tying demonstrations by outstanding fly tiers, watching bunches of videos on fly tying, and reading countless recipe / tying sequence articles in books, magazines, and here on FAOL and other websites, I saw a technique demonstrated in a "step by step" presentation in another thread yesterday which I have never seen before.
Another BB member suggested that an existing fly might serve the originator of this unique technique just as well as his new fly.
Well, yeah. Just like the originator of that fly might have been as well served by an earlier fly originated by an earlier tier, just like the originator of that earlier fly might have been as well served by an even earlier fly originated by an even earlier tier, just like .... and you all know where I am going with this. Somewhere to the dark ages of fly angling with a history of untold millions of fly anglers fishing the same fly, forever.
Something else, something more important in my view, was lost in the suggestion that an existing fly would do as well. That folks who come up with an original pattern ( and somewhere there is probably an earlier version of the same or a nearly identical fly, but unknown to our new originator ), get an unusual reward and satisfaction from catching fishies with their own original fly.
In the past six or seven years I've designed three or four original flies - maybe not in the sense those flies had never existed anywhere at any point in time, but original in the sense that I had never seen them and did not copy someone else's fly. Those originals expanded, with minor modifications in size, color, and materials, to seven or eight flies which serve most of my fly angling needs year round.
I don't kid myself that these flies catch more or bigger fishies than other flies would catch if I fished them instead. I wouldn't be at all surprised if other flies "outfished" my own originals, at least some of the time.
And I don't have to kid myself that no other set of flies could ever give me the satisfaction I get from going out with a box full of my own "originals" and successfully hunting trouts. And I am sure that no other set of flies could "outfun" the originals I use.
The fish are always right.