My heart is heavy this afternoon, as I just heard the news that a friend and former coworker has left us way too soon.
Paul Birling was one of those guys who could just easily sit at his desk all day and you’d never know he was there. He was quiet and unassuming. I didn’t know him outside of work, but I did know that he was a family man who really loved his kids.
I first worked with Paul way back in 2000 when he was assigned to design my book, Whitetail Wisdom. It was his vision that made that book visually what it is today. In fact, it was his idea to use an illustration on the cover: something that hadn’t been dared in years. The sales folks back then said an illustration wouldn’t help sell the book. Paul politely disagreed, contacted his buddy Scott Zoellnick (a renowned wildlife artist), and approached me with the concept.
I absolutely loved it. It not only reminded me of the good, old days of deer hunting, it literally illustrated dozens of points that I made in the text.
During his tenure here at F+W Media, he designed several other top-notched books and publications, including the famous book by Lee & Tiffany Lakosky: Hunting Mature Bucks the Lakosky Way.
After graduating high school, he attended Madison Area Technical College where he received his degree in Commercial Art Design. Paul was an illustrator and graphic designer his entire career. He was first employed with Liebold and Associates of Neenah, Wis. After that he took a position with Ads Infinitum, Inc. of Appleton. He then started
his own business, Paul Birling Illustrations. Most recently he worked with Krause Publications of Iola (an imprint of F+W Media) until his retirement.
Goodbye, Paul. Your kindness touched many of us.