Ken Harris

Ken Harris

“I began painting plein air after we moved to Southern Utah. I have reconnected with my life long love of the West. I try to capture all the pleasing compositions and subtle nuances of my surroundings. My goal is to find ways to achieve the many moods of a landscape. Freezing a moment in time with the subtleties of color and atmosphere. I am striving to capture the “feel “ of the cliffs and mesas with a painterly realism, and am continually pursuing the spiritual nature and beauty of this land. I treasure the ability to find beauty in the everyday. I am constantly drawn to way the sunlight falls on a tree or how the sky is reflected in water These are the things that bring me joy. I remember exactly when and where I was each time I look at one of my paintings. I am humbled that I can share something so personal and touch someone else by that experience through my art.”

Born and raised in southern New Mexico, Ken has a long history of visuals. As a young boy, he was inspired by his grand mother who was an artist. She passed those genes to his creative father and now to Ken.

He was awarded an art scholarship to New Mexico Junior College and received his AA degree there and started his real education in the arts. He received a BFA degree in Graphic Design from Brigham Young University and a Master of Arts degree from Western Oregon University. One of the most important concepts he learned from his education is how to look. “ Paint what you see, not what you know.“ That intense looking has served him well. It has also influenced his style of representational art. Honing his hand-to-eye coordination, he also became a master calligrapher, studying gilding and medieval illumination with the scribe to the Queen of England.

Ken’s career began as a graphic designer for Pasadena City College in Pasadena California. He then took a position with Western Oregon University in Monmouth Oregon, from there he went to work as an artist at American Greeting’s World Headquarters in Cleveland, Ohio. His love of the West led him to Southern Utah and the beginning of plein air painting.

He is constantly studying the varied landscapes of his surroundings for the next painting inspiration. Art is a continuing journey for him, feeling the challenge when facing each new canvas.