The musings of a landscape painter, art teacher, and art history lover
I've been making art all my life, I just can't stop! As far back into childhood as I can remember, I was making art. When I'm not making art, I'm thinking about making art. As a child, I would sit in my room for hours drawing tanks, soldiers, birds, people, whatever. My parents noticed, of course, and started getting me my own art supplies and even a drafting board to work on. That was it, I was hooked.
As I got older, my grandparents began taking me around to the galleries of Scottsdale, Arizona. They collected watercolor paintings, so I got to go to a number of show openings and meet the watercolor artists. I felt like a big shot, mingling with the professional painters! Soon I was teaching myself to paint with watercolors. I began with Zoltan Szabo's Landscape Painting In Watercolor book and worked my way through the exercises. I still own that book, as dog-eared and beat up as it is, and refer to it as I teach my current students.
When it came time to decide on a career, it was a no-brainer. I was to be an artist. I went to undergraduate school at the University of Arizona as an art major, then moved on to graduate school at the University of Delaware. Soon afterward, I found myself working as an artist in Portland, Oregon and teaching art at Willamette University. I was showing at Portland's Blackfish gallery and teaching art. Life was good.
Today, I live back in Phoenix, Arizona with my wife Marla and son Liam. We value family and wanted to be closer. I teach art to junior high and high school students and love my job. Teaching young people is the absolute best. I also practice painting every day and exhibit my work.
My recent paintings are abstract watercolor paintings that derive their inspiration from calligraphy. I have limited myself to a series of dashes of color moving across the page to mimic words and letters. In addition, I have been adding in my own personal symbols. The paintings are spiritual feeling and are meant to be calm and reflective. I call this my "Written Picture Project." Learn more about it HERE.
So, when did I know that I was going to be an artist? It was Christmas1975, and I was five years old. I got a real set of watercolor paints and brushes. Not the Crayola stuff either, these were the real deal. Awesome!
Please be sure to keep up with all that is going on at Bruce Black Art by opting into my NEWSLETTER. You can also buy my original paintings and prints directly from this website.
Author: Bruce Black
Welcome to Artful Academia: