This past weekend I had the pleasure of chatting with Shawn Luchtel of Heartland Bowhunter and HeadHunters TV. Shawn has been involved with Heartland Bowhunter for several years now and recently has joined forces with Randy Birdsong of Whitetail Freaks to put together a new production called HeadHunters TV. We caught up with Shawn to discuss the new show, how it will effect his work on Heartland Bowhunter and updates on how the season is going so far!

So Shawn, can you tell us whats HeadHunters is all about?

Shawn: HeadHunter’s is basically a group of four individuals, with a drive to bring Outdoor Television to America in a way that has never been shown. Yes, you may have heard this before But the whole goal behind HeadHunter’s is to show the viewer behind the scenes, the ups and downs of hunting and television production. HeadHunter’s is set out to show America that the Outdoor Television Industry is not always as fun and simple as it may be perceived. It will be a documentary type show but another goal we will strive to achieve is that even though different shows have different sponsors, different methods of hunting, and may not appear to work together…at the end of the day we are all friends. We are all there for the same reason.

How did you get involved with HeadHunters?

Shawn:  I became involved with HeadHunter’s through Randy Birdsong. Randy started, owns and runs the day to day operations for HeadHunter’s. About two and a half years ago Randy came to me about a new project he was going to start. He was looking for someone that had a lot of experience with field production and some post-production. Fortunately, I met the criteria and Randy brought me on board. Since then we have been traveling, worked countless hours and sacrificed a lot in our lives to make this show come together.

When did work begin on HeadHunters?

Shawn: I started last fall. Randy and I went on one elk hunt, a mule deer hunt, two whitetail hunts, a couple waterfowl hunts and a turkey hunt.

Since Head Hunters is a look behind the scenes of the outdoor tv industry, can you tell me one thing that people would never expect about how you guys film these shows?

Shawn: My main focus is to make the production different than other shows. People might not understand how the shots were constructed but the main purpose is that the viewer notices them and is drawn towards the show. For example adding movement…I think from a viewers perspective they are more drawn to an artistic moving shot than a wide plain shot that has no meaning or purpose. An example of this might be a tight, track dolly shot.

Changing topics a little, how will your work with Head Hunters effect what you’re doing with Heartland Bowhunter?

Shawn: I have obligations to film for both shows as much as possible. I am a recent college graduate and since graduation I have started working for both shows full time. I am on the road almost constantly this fall. In the past, I had school and other jobs to attend. But now HeadHunter’s has helped finance me enough to where I can hunt/film full time. So the effect of HeadHunter’s on Heartland Bowhunter has definitely been a positive. It has made it much more affordable and given me more time to do what I love.

That being said, what are your hunting plans for the rest of the season?

Shawn: I plan to hunt and film in 9 different states this fall. I haven’t killed a whitetail in 3 years since I am usually dedicated to the camera. But I will get to hunt some of the states this year, so I am really hoping I will be lucky enough to bring home a buck on one of our trips. I’ll be in Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska, Illinois, Missouri, Colorado, and New Mexico.

Could you share one tip with the guys, as many folks seasons are beginning or starting shortly?

Shawn: One tip for the guys would be to bring a camera into the woods! Bring back your memory to show everyone else. Whether you killed something or experienced something in the woods that was very unique. Why not share the experience with everyone else? Another tip on last minute preparation would be to make sure you don’t forget about our youth. If the youth isn’t invloved in hunting then how will there be a future for the sport we love?

Speaking of hunting seasons getting started, I know that you and Randy are out in Wyoming hunting right now. Have you had any luck yet?

Shawn: Haha no. I’m filming Randy out here and he passed on a 135″ 6×5 in velvet that he had passed on earlier this week. We also had a really close call with a 150″ this morning but he didn’t come in quite close enough. Also a  tip for you guys, I’d really recommend that more people should try to come hunt whitetails out west. Coming from the Midwest, the hunting out here makes you really pay attention to scent control. The wind is constantly switching or swirling. Hunting out here you are constantly checking wind direction

For more info about HeadHunter’s TV check out their website here. It’s still in the process of being developed, but look for something substantial soon!

And to watch this season of Heartland Bowhunter online, visit HeartlandBowhunter.com