Art and nature have always been important parts of Shawn’s life. Exploring the Iowa countryside as a child, he sought out the solitude of quiet places where nothing would intrude into the world of his imagination. On these early excursions he established a deep love of nature and strong curiosity to see more. Today he explores the west and beyond from his Northern California home but still feels like that little boy running through the fields of his imagination in Iowa. Along the way he has learned what it means to take the path less traveled.
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 a creative person on a regular schedule with deadlines to meet. After working as an illustrator for nearly 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, an illusion that challenges the viewer to suspend their disbelief and free their 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, and the Gilcrease Museum’s American Art in Miniature. He was awarded First Place in the 2018 Artists Magazine Annual Art Competition, First Place in the Humboldt Arts Council Members Exhibition 2012, and an Award of Excellence at the NatureWorks Art Show and Sale 2008. Shawn is a Signature Member of the Society of Animal Artists.