Lee Cable feels most at home in the great outdoors, watching nature and her
creations. It is his back-to-nature fervor that has made Lee one of the
nation's most revered wildlife artists.
Born in 1943, Lee's happiest memories are of his childhood in Greenville,
Ohio, and his experiences with wildlife, stalking deer, fishing and hunting
with his Dad. As his love of the land grew, so did his skill at visual
expression. Lee's teenage years were spent studying design, composition, and
anatomy through the media of charcoal, watercolor, acrylics, oil, and clay.
Lee's trips to the back country satisfy more than just a love of nature;
they provide new inspirations for future paintings. Every new tree, snag, rock
formation, animal or bird must be investigated, examined and then photographed
as reference material for later works.
This insatiable quest to learn nature's secrets is evident in all his works,
Lee's dedication to portraying nature in the purest sense has not gone
unnoticed. Exhibiting throughout the United States and Canada, Lee has won
numerous awards both state and national. Many private collections include
examples of Lee's art.
Today, Lee paints with opaque watercolors. The result, states Lee, is that
he is able to create a much softer image, with more control of values and hues,
a dimension which is extremely important in fine art. Lee was known to many of
his early admirers as "The Raccoon Man". It was a case of forgetting the name,
but remembering the face-the face of an appealing little creature who quickly
became his trademark. If you look closely at his paintings, you will be able to
find a paw print hidden somewhere in the leaves or grass.
When Kevin Daniel began dabbling in paints and completing portraits as a
young man in the early 1960's, he had no thought that he was nurturing the
beginnings of a profession that would last a lifetime. As he studied the
Renaissance master's paintings and portraits from books and museums and
sketched family, friends and strangers, his thoughts were only on how much he
enjoyed what he was doing.
In his twenties, this Minnesota native began concentrating on painting
animals and wildlife, discovering that people really appreciated the realism
and natural beauty he brought to his subjects.
With increasing confidence brought on by the popular demand for his work, he
joined the competitive chase for the elusive but lucrative recognition bestowed
upon the national and state Duck Stamp winners. Thus waterfowl became a primary
subject for him while in his thirties.
He also painted many other birds and wildlife in natural settings, bringing
the viewer into remote scenes untouched by mankind. The camera became Daniel's
best friend as he searched the lakes, forests, valleys and countryside of
Minnesota for the "real thing." Literally thousands of pictures are taken or
purchased so that he can bring the subjects in his imagination to life.
Daniel has now returned to the romantic creativeness of the masters'
portraits he studied as a teen. He has turned his camera on family and friends
to feature real people in his paintings. His paintings portray intimate and
impressionistic scenes of nostalgic family life and collectors embrace his
versatility. Daniel manages to portray his human subjects much like the animals
in his wildlife paintings. The viewer is an unannounced visitor to the moment,
eavesdropping on the subject.
He continues to attract a growing body of collectors. His honors have been
many and include the 1991 Minnesota Wildlife Heritage Foundation "Artist of the
Year"; winner of the 1990 Minnesota Duck Stamp competition, and "Best of Show"
awards at the Kansas City National Wildlife Art Show and the Oklahoma Wildlife
While Wilhelm Goebel was majoring in biology at Ithaca College, his primary
focus was ornithology. He had been fascinated by birds for as long as he could
remember, and as he began to teach himself to draw, birds were his first
For a brief time, he considered a career in biological illustration. He
could do detailed drawings of skeletal structures, muscles, and feathers; but
the painter inside him wanted more. It would be a choice between the security
of an academic career, or the gamble of making a living through painting. As
Wilhelm puts it, I was single at the time, so I had only myself to
It was difficult at first, often a long time between sales of his work or
winning a prize in competition. But the small victories began to grow larger.
In 1982, he had his work admitted to the prestigious Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art
Show; a feat he would repeat year after year. Other shows followed, including
the Society of Animal Artists Annual Exhibition with its national
From the beginning, Wilhelm believed in the value and the necessity of field
work, of personal observation. He says, A lot of work, my paintings, my
ideas, come from being out in the woods or in the wilderness, or wherever,
coming across the animals and watching them.
Wilhelm has traveled extensively in his field work, captivated equally by
the Yukon as well as the Yucatan, capturing on film and memory those images he
will put on canvas.
While birds still hold a special place in Wilhelms artistic heart, he
is equally at home painting Alaskan wolves or Majestic herds of Elk in
Yellowstone National Park.
Asked what he likes best about being a painter, he promptly replies,
Getting out there, watching nature, trying to record what I
Bob Henleys deepest wish is that his life will be remembered as a
statement for the preservation of wildlife and its habitat. He is a staunch
conservationist, trying to convey his dedication to nature through a growing
collection of expressive oil paintings.
Knowing that the necessary balance of nature is threatened almost
everywhere, Bob is trying to help inspire the world to develop - or recapture -
its respect for nature. To ensure natures survival, he believes people
have to understand how land, forest, wetland, animals, birds
other parts of our natural heritage
Bob was born in Roanoke, Virginia, and lives there today. Traveling in the
nearby Blue Ridge Mountains, he works to see and study the wildlife he paints.
Accuracy and detail are vitally important to me, he says,
because I really want others to see these animals as they really are. The
only way I can show people whats threatened in nature is to bring them
close to it - through my paintings.
That Bob has been successful is evident by the awards and honors he has
received. His work is found in numerous private and corporate collections, and
he was chosen to be the featured artist for the 1995 Southeastern Wildlife
Moreover, those who see and admire his work can readily see and understand
that Bobs goals and ideals have to be mirrored by everyone if nature is
Wildlife artist and activist Alan M. Hunt considers himself a
zoologist who paints wildlife. Born in North Yorkshire, England,
Alans artistic talents began to show when he was quite young and were
encouraged by his family. Alan attended Middlesborough Art College in Yorkshire
and went on to study zoology at Leeds College and Bristol University.
Alan has worked with animals in the wild and captivity - in parks, zoos and
reserves. He has used his ability as a naturalist-guide for bird watchers and
others interested in nature all around the world. Alan began full-time after
others showed a great deal of interest in his paintings. Over the years, he has
exhibited his work in museums, galleries and other locales worldwide. His
wildlife art hangs in public and private collections.
Alan paints only during daylight hours; he never uses artificial light.
Working in a variety of media, primarily oil and gouache, but also ink,
acrylic, egg tempera and watercolor, he achieves a variety of exquisite
textures from feathers to rocks. His extensive world travels, observations and
experience with wild animals clearly show in his realistic style of painting,
which is both accurate and evocative.
A devoted conservationist, Alan is constantly seeking new ways to help
environmental groups raise funds. He now concentrates his work solely on
endangered species in order to bring their threatened survival to the attention
of as many people as possible.
If my son doesnt get to see half the wildlife in his lifetime
that Ive seen, Ill feel very guilty. Rather than become famous as a
painter, I would like to be remembered as someone who tried to make people
aware of the need to protect the environment and the planet.
Mark Kelso studied at John Herron School of Art where he focused on social,
philosophical, and environmentally oriented work. This nature vs. civilization
content in his work was translated to wildlife subject matter following his
senior year, and has remained his sole subject matter since.
Mark is known for his highly detailed, acrylic renderings. His subject
matter is often less familiar animals, which are sometimes portrayed, in
confrontational scenarios. He will also add conceptual elements to his works
when possible, that emphasize his environmental concerns.
"I have developed a reputation for painting animals and situations that are
usually avoided by other wildlife artist. The life and death cycle, and
inter-species confrontations have become reoccurring themes in my work. What I
hope to express through my body of wok is that there's an extraordinary
abundance of life forms on this world, all interaction with each other, all
important, all beautiful, and we are a part of that event called nature...not
separate or above it".
Artist, W. Rock Newcomb has one goal in mind - to create art that will draw
the viewer into the works he has created, focus on it, and perhaps discover a
refreshing view in what he has portrayed.
Born in 1945 in Oakland, California on a military base, Newcomb and his
family moved shortly thereafter to Nebraska. Among his fondest memories are
those of exploring nature and fishing on the Republican River with his father,
uncles and cousins. It was during these formative years, that his family,
especially his grandmother took an interest in his drawing. Together, the
budding artist and his grandmother would haunt the local library. Looking
through books, he would draw what he saw.
At the age of eight, the Newcomb family moved once more - this time to
Rupert, Idaho, where a homestead awaited their pioneer spirit. Breaking out the
sagebrush, leveling the land and installing an irrigation system were just the
beginning of establishing a farm. Inevitably came the daily chores of working
the field and the twice daily milking of the cows.
Although farming was never to become the young field hand's calling, he
appreciated the land's natural beauty and the creatures that inhabited it.
Abundant wildlife such as hawks, eagles, badgers, coyotes, foxes and others
became a daily part of his experience on the farm. One of his favorite pastimes
was searching for Native American artifacts along the Snake River.
Leaving home at the age of 18, Newcomb escaped his distaste of milking cows
by gaining employment at a service station before heeding his longing for a
formal education. Briefly attending Idaho State University, he moved to
Southern California where he earned a Bachelor's of Arts and a Master's Degree
in Art from California State University Fullerton.
Combining his love of teaching and art, Newcomb has taught high school
students for 25 years. The last 15 of those years, he's also pursued a
professional career as an artist. As an educator he appreciates the opportunity
to teach his students what he loves most. As an artist he is best known for his
"photo realistic" images. That enjoyment is reflected in the quality of his
work, and in the works of his students as well.
Currently residing in Oceanside, California, Newcomb continues to teach high
school art classes while his art career grows and flourishes. Working from his
home studio which he describes as a typical two-story, Southern California
stucco, the artist sets about his work surrounded by two drafting tables,
mirrors, stereo and "all the junk I can pack into it for resources," he
Equally skilled in watercolor, acrylic and opaque watercolor called gouache
(pronounced gwash) nevertheless, it is his considerable skill at scratchboard
that has caught the eye of most of his collectors. With only a handful of
nationally acclaimed artists taking this art form to task due to the patience
and hours required to master it, Newcomb can be justifiably proud of the
stature he has acquired among his peers and collectors.
Just what is scratchboard anyway? The artist explains. "Scratchboard is a
good quality illustration board or masonite coated with a fine layer of white
clay which has been mixed with a binding agent or glue. This is then coated
with a delicate layer of ink. Using a very fine, honed, needle-like tool, I
then proceed to scratch or peck through the black ink, revealing the white
clay," he says. "After spending an average of 90 to 120 hours per piece I then
layer in watercolor washes. Usually a minimum of six layers of watercolor is
needed to achieve the desired "glow" which constitutes good color in these
pieces. Scratchboard is a medium which allows very little room for error, so I
must concentrate on every passage and transition."
As for his creative process, he finds the most challenging is
conceptualizing the idea. From there he does a thumbnail sketch in the form of
a cartoon which is then transferred onto the scratchboard. The real work now
begins with the scratching and painting. "My subject matter included everything
from pandas to cowboys. I get my inspiration from photos I have taken, from my
wife, other artists, on-sight field trips and what I ate for breakfast," he
Working a full day as a teacher and then painting into the night, Newcomb is
supported in this 'round-the-clock lifestyle by his business manager and wife
of 15 years, Cody. Both hail from the small farm community of Rupert, Idaho.
Boasting a population of around 4,000 the area specializes in the growing of
potatoes and sugar beets. "We went to high school together in Rupert," Cody
says. "We hung out in the same crowd, but never dated then."
Sixteen years later, the two met again in their hometown during the local
4th of July celebration. A year later, the couple stopped in Las Vegas for an
impromptu wedding ceremony. Married in tennis shoes, jeans and sweatshirts, it
was official. Part of his new family consisted of children from previous
marriage; Rock's sons, Michael and Matt; and Cody's daughter Marcy.
Causes important to Newcomb include those organizations involved in wildlife
and habitat preservation. "I've seen nature so misused and abused and in a
declining state in my 50 years," he says. "I don't want it to disappear." The
artist supports such organizations as The Nature Conservancy, The San Diego
Zoological Society and World Wildlife Fund.
Newcomb has an impressive list of awards and exhibitions to his credit
including Yawkey Woodson Birds in Art, and Wildlife in Art; and Arts for the
Parks - top 100. He has been a featured artist for Safari Club International
and Southern California Ducks Unlimited. Articles in national art magazines
such as U.S. Art, Wildlife Art News, The Hunter's Horn Magazine and Artist's
Magazine confer well-deserved accolades.
Recently, the Vermont publishing house of Applejack Limited Editions,
recognizing the quality of Newcomb's work, penned a contract with the artist to
act as his agent in both the limited edition print and licensing markets.
Although Newcomb finds fulfillment as an educator, his heart's desire is to
devote undiluted focus on his professional art career. With his philosophy of
self reliance and a burning desire to succeed, he possesses the attributes and
talent to make that dream a reality.
Ron Parker began painting as a career a little late in life. At the age of
35, he was inspired, after seeing an exhibition of original paintings by
Fenwick Lansdowne, to try painting wildlife himself. His first effort, in 1977,
was successful and he quit work and began painting full time. Using
watercolors, a medium with which he was familiar, he began doing vignette
paintings of birds and mammals. Within four months he was selling originals
through the Harrison Gallery in Vancouver.
As a young man, Ron had been a basketball player and the Canadian Decathlon
Champion in 1966. Using the discipline and perseverance learned in athletic
training, he applied himself full time to improving his art. Over the next
twenty years, Ron continued to improve his artwork taking what began as
illustration to complete paintings that created mood and feeling in their
depictions of animals in their natural settings.
In order to collect materials for his paintings, Ron and his family have
lived next to the Rocky Mountains and on Vancouver Island. He is a keen hiker
and backpacker and has drawn on his back country experiences to create the
authenticity and verisimilitude found in his paintings.
Although known for his wildlife, Ron is also a landscape artist and
portraitist. He has been doing portraits of family members for the past 30
years and has begun doing portraits by commission.
Judis interest in wildlife grew out of her girlhood in Nebraska, and
later, Minnesota where fishing and hunting for wild game was an interest shared
with her father, brother and later her husband. Eventually, in 1974, the
Rideout family moved to Palmer, Alaska, where she found pastel painting added a
new challenge and expanded her interest and respect for the animals she
portrays as reflected in her work.
As a wildlife realist artist, Judi defines realism as a careful attention to
the study of detail - hair growing in the right direction, reflecting both
sheen and softness - the eyes of a wild animal show a momentary restful
concentration while at the same time remaining alert. For Judi, all must be
carefully noted and portrayed. Her devotion to the subjects she depicts
eliminates the need for detailed backgrounds. The viewer is given a sense of
the habitat while the animals themselves are stated in meticulous detail and
command full attention. Judi is, after all, an animal portrait artist, and she
regards the comparison of her work to photography as that of the highest
compliments. But, beyond a perfectly clear image, Judi captures the nature of
each animals gentle nobility.
Richard Sloan, born in Chicago, Illinois, attended the American Academy of
Art and worked as an advertising illustrator before joining Chicago's Lincoln
Park Zoo as a staff artist.
Sloan's paintings have been featured in Readers Digest, national and
international wildlife magazines, U.S. Art, Wildlife Art and numerous outdoor
publications including Arizona Wildlife-Magazine. His works have been exhibited
at Explores Hall, The National Geographic Society, The British Museum of
Natural History, The Royal Scottish Academy, The Carnegie Museum, The
California Academy of Sciences, The American Museum of Natural History and
other museums and galleries throughout the United States. He has received two
Awards of Excellence from The Society of Animal Artists.
Since 1979, his work has been exhibited in 18 Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art
Museum "Birds in Art Exhibitions," and in 1994, the museum conferred upon Sloan
the award of Master Wildlife Artist, the highest honor given to a contemporary
Sloan's works are included in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian
Institution, Washington, D.C. The Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, Wausau, WI;
The Illinois State Museum, Springfield, IL; and private collections throughout
the United States, Canada, Europe, South America, Japan and the United Arab
He has executed commissions for the World Wildlife Fund, including First Day
cover caches and postage stamps for Trinidad and Tobago, Guatemala, the
Philippines and the Falkland Islands. The Book "Raptors of Arizona" published
by the University of Arizona Press and released in the spring of 1998, contains
a series of 42 Sloan paintings. His work also appears in three recently
published books: "More Wildlife Paintings: Techniques of Modern Masters" and
"The Best of Wildlife Art" and "The Best of Wildlife Art #2."
Sloan's widely acclaimed paintings of the flora and fauna of the world's
rain forests are the results of extensive field work in the jungles of Mexico,
Central and South America and his love for their inhabitants. Since 1969, Sloan
has embarked on 15 expeditions into Guatemala, Trinidad and Tobago, Belize,
Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, the Amazon Basin and the Peruvian Andes.
Dee Smith's work has been included on the national tours of art museums with
the prestigious Birds in Art Exhibitions of the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum
and the Society of Animal Artists Annual Exhibitions. His work has been shown
in galleries and natural history museums in the United States, Canada and in
the Wildlife Art exhibition at Christie's in England. He has won many first
place and Best of Show awards including winning the Florida Wildlife magazine
cover art competition in 1989, 1990 and 1997. His painting "Two of a kind" was
the 1993 Texas Non-Game stamp and Limited Edition print. In 1994, he won the
esteemed Purchase Award and the Press Print Award at the Society of Animal
Artists 34th Annual Exhibition.
His work is in many collections including the permanent collection of the
Bennington Center for the Arts in Vermont and the State of Florida. In 1990,
1996 and 1997, his work "The Suitor" of Great Egrets, was included in the Leigh
Yawkey Woodson Art Museum's "Birds in Art" exhibition and the following
national tours. In 1997, his work was published in "The Best of Wildlife Art -
96 of the World's Finest Wildlife Artists" by North Light Books. The city of
Ocala, Florida published a Limited Edition print of his "Close Encounter" of
Purple Gallinules and a turtle. It was presented to Gov. Chiles and each member
of the Florida Legislative. Dee's painting "The Suitor" won the "People's
Choice Award" in the 1997 "Art and the Animal Kingdom" exhibition at the
Bennington Center for the Arts. His painting, "Still Waters" of Wood Storks
exhibited at Disney's Animal Kingdom as part of the "Art and the Animal" show
in 1998. Dee's paintings are a part of the National Wildlife Federation's year
Many of Dee's paintings are in Limited Edition and open edition prints
through Flight Feather Publishing and Applejack Limited Editions.
For more than a decade, wildlife artist Jeff Tift has dedicated himself to
his passion - portraying the natural beauty of the magnificent Pacific
Northwest through his paintings. A native of Washington state, Jeff draws his
inspiration form his surroundings, researching and studying the wildlife
indigenous to his home.
Jeffs relentless devotion to capturing the beauty of nature on canvas
- combined with his enormous talent - has brought him remarkable success and
recognition. His works have been represented in some of the most prestigious
wildlife art exhibitions in the United States and Canada, and he is the proud
recipient of the Best of Show award at the famed Pacific Rim
Wildlife Show and the Peoples Choice Award at the Milwaukee Sports
Concerned with the rapid decline of our countrys environment and the
loss of many species of animals, Jeff is motivated by an intense desire to
preserve our wildlife in paintings for future generations to appreciate and
enjoy. Through his art, Jeff strives to help foster a greater respect and
understanding for the world around us.
Bob Travers received his formal education at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New
York. Graduating with a BFA in Drawing, Painting and Education, Bob set his
sights towards the field of Commercial Illustrations. By 1978, he had secured
the position of Art Director with a publishing house in New York City. There
his creativity extended into the areas of Graphic Design, Layout and
Mechanicals, as well as Editorial and Cover Illustration for the many magazines
under his direction. By 1980, Bob had expanded his number of freelance
clientele, allowing him to totally pursue his illustration technique. Bob
signed with an agent in 1983, and his career skyrocketed.
In 1988 Bob Travers left behind a successful career as a Commercial Artist
to pursue his passion for painting wildlife. At his first juried Wildlife
Exhibit, in June, 1989, Bob swept the show winning six major awards including
the Peoples Choice Award and Best in Show, securing Bob the title of
Artist of the Year. Bob has continued winning such awards.
Bob is found in his studio daily bringing together his past experiences and
setting new goals. I have a deep respect for nature and wildlife. That
respect is the inspiration for my work. What I capture in my paintings are the
kind of scenes that should be preserved in nature for generations to
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