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Daily Inspiration: Meet Michael Anderson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Michael Anderson.

Hi Michael, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
After graduating from SIU-Edwardsville, my first job was creating home furnishings displays for the Famous-Barr department store at Northwest Plaza. While there I was asked to create a rendering of a model room setting. With the success of that rendering, I knew I wanted a job where I could use my drawing skills on a daily basis. I worked as a draftsman for a civil engineering firm and then began freelancing architectural illustrations. I was able to gradually build a commercial studio practice that also allowed me to create and exhibit my drawings and paintings. Along the way I learned computer aided design and 3D modeling skills, became involved in urban sketching and plein air painting, and joined a collective art gallery. In 2019 I began to add new subject matter to my studio work and paint with a brighter, modern-era color palette. The acceptance of my recent paintings has been very encouraging. This year my works have been shown in exhibitions at the Cape Cod Museum of Art as well as local juried venues including the Angad Arts Hotel, Art Saint Louis and the Green Door Gallery. Additionally I was chosen to paint a wall for the 2021 Belleville Mural Project which was a very fun experience!

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
Starting a family, building a home and dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome and diabetes at times required my full attention. I stopped painting for several years but I always found time to draw in a sketchbook way before “urban sketching” was a thing. I joined non-profit visual arts groups and met other artists that shared similar interests to my own. The St. Louis Artists’ Guild and the Gateway East Artists Guild continue to be sources of inspiration and opportunity. Also my family and friends have always been a great help to me. I am especially indebted to my wife, Carla, for her encouragement, companionship and care. Next year we will celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary!

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
In my studio work I paint imagery inspired by a variety of sources including old newsreels and digitally altered photos. Also I am hooked on painting “plein air” landscapes but I have put away all the muddy colors in my paint box. This year I was honored to be a Visiting Artist for the SIU-E summer plein air painting class. I titled my presentation Expressionist Nature which is also one of my favorite galleries at the Saint Louis Art Museum. My class demo painting was selected as the poster art for the 2021 season of Opera Edwardsville.

We’d love to hear about how you think about risk taking?
I recently read a quote that described a risk not taken as an opportunity missed. Being open to new possibilities is what makes the work interesting to me and hopefully to those that collect my work.

Contact Info:

Image Credits

Vanessa Rudolph Angad Arts Hotel Art Saint Louis Belleville Mural Project St. Louis Artist’s Guild

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