Artistic Excellence 2015 | First Place: Bruce Lawes


Bruce Lawes, On a Cloud, oil, 40 x 50.

Bruce Lawes, On a Cloud, oil, 40 x 50.

What inspired your winning entry? I chose ON A CLOUD as the title not just because it is representative of the dust cloud this beautiful dressage horse and rider have stirred up, but it also symbolically represents what all riders must feel when mounting their horse—like they’re on a cloud. It is this kind of symbolic message or story that strengthens a painting’s success and is what often inspires me to paint a subject.

How would you describe your style? My style has often been called photo-realistic or sometimes even hyperrealism. But I use different techniques to arrive at a realistic result, often use different approaches from one painting to the next, and sometimes even use multiple techniques on the same painting.

What is the best advice you have ever received? A quote by Wayne Gretzky, “If you don’t shoot the puck, you will miss the goal 100 percent of the time.”

If you weren’t an artist, what would you be? If I wasn’t an artist, I would be an artisan in wood and plaster creating architectural masterpieces in buildings and homes.

What’s the most meaningful recognition you’ve received for your artwork? I find that being a member of groups such as Artists for Conservation and the Society of Animal Artists is especially significant because they are fulfilling an important role in conservation. I look for projects that can assist in conservation and the preservation of our animal kingdom. Arabella magazine recently asked me to create a painting of Cecil, the lion that was killed by a big-game hunter on safari in Zimbabwe. Cecil’s death created worldwide outrage and has been the start of new restrictions and hopefully continued and increased conservation in Africa.

What galleries represent your work? Trailside Galleries, Jackson, WY, and Scottsdale, AZ; Settlers West Galleries, Tucson, AZ; Westmount Gallery, Toronto, ON, Canada.

Featured in the December 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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