No one knows better
than an outdoorsman the drama, tension and feeling of the relationship between
predator and prey, and no one can appreciate that drama portrayed on canvas
better than those who see it enacted in real-life. Artist, Rich Pelletreau
captures the drama of nature in acrylics in a style that is a combination of
impressionism and vivid realism with an Alla Prima form of painting which is as
spontaneous as the wildlife he paints. Alla Prima is the painting of a complete
work in a few sessions without preliminary layers or drawings. It allows the
artist to capture an immediate, spontaneous self-conscious response to the
subject and the viewer to be a part of the very act of the painting through the
paint used, layers, thickness, brush strokes, etc.
A native from New York, Rich, who came west in 1961, worked for a pack outfit in Montana until 1963 when he returned to school to follow a dream of a career in art; earn an A.F.A. degree in art from the Silvermine College of Art and a B.F.A. degree from the San Francisco Art Institute. This he abandoned for a number of years to join the Peace Corps in India and later to get into the horse business. After a number of years of owning and operating a riding stable and a stint on the rodeo circuit, he returned to his artwork and lived in Montana where he got a job illustrating wildlife of the Northwest, in pen and ink, for the Park Service. This was the start of his interest in wildlife art. Around 1980, then on his own, living on the road going from art show to art show, finding that the pen and inks weren't selling, he changed to painting with acrylics on masonite. He feels, however, that it gave him a good foundation for his painting, saying that he's a firm believer that you must be able to draw before you can paint.
Now he lives close to Lake Isabella in Weldon, California, with his wife, Jeannie, painting for shows, galleries, teaching workshops and demonstrations. As President and a signature member of the Wildlife Artist Association, he now works mostly in his gallery, The Rich Pelletreau Wildlife Gallery and Studio, but enjoys his time in the field doing sketching and painting for his displays in his own gallery and in galleries and art shows throughout the western U.S.
Rich sums up his art by stating, "Nature has so much to offer man if he'd just get off his pedestal and take a look around." Those who view Pelletreau's work don't have to look far.
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