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Wayne Russell

Commissions, Portraits, Pets and Original Art

As a child growing up in Southern Maryland crabbing, fishing and playing baseball, I also enjoyed sketching and drawing cartoons.  In third grade, I was the cartoonist for our school newsletter at Frank Knox Elementary and in sixth grade, I drew a periodic chart of the elements on a large poster board and was selected to be on a local television show, “Time for Science” in Washington DC where I also had my first public speaking experience explaining the science behind the periodic elements.   The show was “live” and all my classmates watched me in the auditorium at Town Creek Elementary on the one television that was at the school.  While majoring in Mathematics (B.S.) and Computer Science (M.S.) at Virginia Tech, I also took two oil painting classes and continued painting after I left college.  Most of my paintings were copies of Vincent Van Gogh works, but I also did some original works.

As I continued my professional career in Computer Science and Networks, I didn’t seem to have the time to paint and stopped for many years even though I still did sketches of comic book characters for my children.  About seven years ago, I began taking oil painting lessons from Bill Harris of LibertyTown Arts in Fredericksburg, Virginia.  I found that I really enjoyed doing portraits of friends and iconic persons such as John Wayne and others.  I have also done commissioned portraits for several people.  I also began doing paintings of water scenes, birds, animals and lighthouses. Growing up on the Patuxent River and Chesapeake Bay was a big influence on the work that I now do.  I was also influenced by science fiction movies that I saw as a child.

While oil painting is my primary medium, I have also begun to work more with photography and have sold canvas prints of some of my work. During the 1960s, I always enjoyed the psychedelic silkscreen posters and have worked with both Jason Frank and Brianna Bevan of Itty Bitty Press in Richmond, Virginia to design and create silk screen posters based on my original artwork.  Several of my silk screen posters are on display and for sale in the Hooked store in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

I have had my own art studio at Studio A in Fredericksburg, Virginia and even held an art show, The Kingston Creek Art Fest, with music and food at my childhood home in California, Maryland in September 2016.  Several artists from Fredericksburg, Virginia participated in the show including Eduardo King and N.D. Jones as well as Mary Lou Troutman, a well-known Maryland artist.  I will be having a “second” and bigger show on May 20, 2017 with over ten artists.  I have had works in juried shows at LibertyTown Arts (the “Frozen” and “Food” shows) and also twice with the Charles County Arts Alliance in Southern Maryland.  My works have been displayed in Sammy T’s and will be on display for a new show at J’ Brian’s of Fredericksburg in March and April 2017.  I am also doing a new painting for a show for the grand opening of the “new” Sammy T’s in March 2017.

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