Art and nature have always been important parts of Shawn’s life. Growing up, he spent many days outdoors exploring the streams and woodlands near his home. These formative experiences first established his deep love of nature and his unending curiosity to see more. Along the way he learned to follow the path less traveled, a path that he continues to explore today.
Shawn began his art career as an illustrator, creating award winning science and natural history illustrations for clients like the National Geographic Society, Smithsonian Institute, and National Audubon Society. This was an important time to hone his skills and learn to be professional in a creative environment. After working as an illustrator for a decade, he was able to turn his attention to creating his own paintings full time.
Shawn’s paintings are a blend of photorealism and tonalism with areas of precise detail giving way to softer edges and muted tones. The result is everyday nature seen through the eyes of the artist. Nature provides a constant stream of new inspiration with its ever changing conditions of seasons, weather, and light. Shawn’s goal is to capture the fleeting moments when all of these elements come together to change an ordinary scene into something special. Drawing inspiration from these personal experiences also brings an authentic realism to his work. This realism is balanced by passages where detail gives way to a looser, more suggestive representation making room for the viewer’s own imagination.
Shawn’s work has received national recognition in American Art Collector, Western Art Collector and American Artist Magazines. His paintings have been exhibited in the Buffalo Bill Art Show, Birds in Art, the Society of Animal Artists’ Art of the Animal, as well as galleries and museums across the nation. He has been awarded First Place in the Artists Magazine Annual Competition, First Place in the Richeson 75 Animals, Birds, and Wildlife Competition, and an Award of Excellence at the NatureWorks Art Show. Shawn is a Signature Member of the Society of Animal Artists.