I Lived and Loved
my early years growing up in an oil camp in the mountains between Meeker and Craig, in Northwest Colorado. Hiking, camping, skiing, and wildlife were my life, outside of school. I attended a one room school house with 8 students, (1st through 4th grade), and as my bad luck would have it, there were no girls, weird eh? Our teacher, Mrs. Aspergren, taught all the subjects, AND played piano and taught art. She was the most amazing artist my young eyes had ever seen, and I fell in love with art and music.
I was bussed to Meeker, in the 5th grade, and discovered to my amazement and delight, that girls would sit next to you if you could draw horses. Sweet! I played this up to the max., but when I later attended high school in Craig, I found that football, basketball and baseball , also addressed my need for attention.
In college at the University of New Mexico, football played a part of my life, but I also started taking art classes from professionals.
These classes made me feel lost as they concentrated on abstract art, that I couldn’t understand. We were also told that you really couldn’t make a living as an artist. I did enjoy my first figure drawing class with a live nude model, although I often felt that she was undressing me with her eyes. Confused my fragile ego! I switched my major to Architecture, hoping that it would provide a decent living, but continued to paint and began showing pen and inks, oils and photographs.
I discovered the genre of “Wildlife and Western Art” and found that exhibiting this kind of art could be very gratifying, and a good reason to wear a cowboy hat.
In 1975 I began the journey of showing my art around the southwest, from Nashville, Tenn. and Texas, to Arizona, N.M. to Denver, Kansas City, and Wyoming. I discovered that I preferred painting in acrylics for many reasons, but mainly that if I accidentally ate some, it wasn’t fatal.
My first wife and I did at least 10 shows a year, for 30 years, pulling a trailer and seeing more country than most Gypsies ever see. The exposure to other artists work was the best education I ever experienced, invaluable!
In 2008 we took a summer long camping trip through Canada and Alaska. Just before entering Canada, we discovered Sandpoint, Idaho. After returning from Alaska, 3 months later, we bought a home in Sandpoint and there you go! The mountains, lakes, rivers and wildlife are beyond imagination. Sandpoint is populated with wonderful folks and has a very vibrant art community.
I now have the best studio and reference material that I could ever hope for,.... and I still have my first wife, Judy! She likes me to draw horses!