Les, when did you first know you wanted to be an artist? What got you started?
I was in the 6th grade. I had been out duck hunting earlier that day. After dinner I got the urge to draw a picture of a duck I had seen that day. I guess I may have been too quiet so my mother came in to see what I was doing. She saw the drawing of my duck and asked me “What did you trace that from?” I said it was a duck I saw today and I wanted to draw it. She said, I didn’t know you could that. I said I didn’t,either. I went back to drawing and continued from that day.
What is your favorite subject matter to paint and why?
Growing up in Port O’Connor, on the coast, I just really liked all the wildlife, especially shore birds.
What living artists inspire you?
John Cowan (accomplished wildlife artist) and I were great friends, although he died a few years ago. He was the one that really inspired me. I loved his subjects and his style.
Who are your favorite artists from history?
I love Andrew Wyeth and Donald Patterson’s style and detail.
Do you have any special tip or technique to share with other artists?
I do a lot of photography. I always try to compose scenes with my camera to use for reference material. Then I like to do a good, detailed drawing. I’ve always been a nut for detail. Watercolor takes patience. Working too fast can sometimes makea mess. Mostly I like my paint to dry between layers. I very rarely use paint directly out of the tube when I work. The colors are usually too harsh. I normally mixcolors to get the tone that I like.
Thank you, Les, for these insights into your artistic process. We love having your work on WaterMediaGallery.com and we look forward to many wonderful paintings in the future.