“When it is my time to leave this world, I wish to do so knowing that I have left paintings that inspire others to appreciate the true wonder and beauty of the natural world.” – Terry Isaac, Wildlife Painter I have been on a journey with my art since I can remember. As a youngster, exploring the world in my backyard was a daily adventure, always finding a new treasure to look over and study. I have never lost the intrigue of daily exploration and discovery. I look for the special, transitory and magical moments in nature that appear with the right lighting, color and atmospheric conditions. Magnificence can be found in large, dramatic landscape or a smaller and less majestic scene such as a moss covered rock.
I began with an interest in animation, drawing cartoons and developing my own characters. I then studied surrealism with great interest. After college, I was interested in children`s book illustration and discovered my passion for wildlife art in the mid 1980`s. I have been creating wildlife art ever since.
I draw my inspiration from observing nature, always on the look out for “magical moments.” Usually seeing a particular setting is what initially inspires me. I then consider which bird or mammal will go well with that scene. I like to capture particularity, avoid stylizing, and expose the uniqueness that every thing in nature possesses. I edit and manipulate the composition until I am satisfied, use abstract shapes and create a painting that has a sense of depth. I work background to foreground – general to specific, striving to create something that is captivating and pleasing to look at.
I usually paint in my studio during the day, every day of the week. There are times when my painting is not flowing right and I get uncomfortable and feel uncertain. Mostly, I feel the magic of watching my work develop into something that looks like the real world.
I feel incredibly blessed to be able to do something I have such a passion and love for. I currently live in Penticton, British Columbia, Canada with my family.
Internationally acclaimed wildlife artist, Terry Isaac grew up in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, and it is there that he began his love affair with wildlife. Drawing inspiration from his own backyard and from the captivating vistas of the Northwest, he began to create dramatic wildlife art. He now calls Penticton, British Columbia, Canada “home” and, since moving, has continued to create paintings capturing unique characteristics of wildlife and their habitat. Terry travels around the world to capture exciting images, but his main painting focus continues to be on North American birds and mammals. Terry’s formal art began with an interest in animation and drawing cartoons. After art college, he was interested in children’s book illustration but soon re-discovered his childhood passion for wildlife. Since the mid 1980’s, he has created realistic wildlife art with a focus on particularity and dramatic light. He is inspired by large panoramas as well as close-up views, and by subjects ranging from whales to hummingbirds.
During his successful professional career Terry has been the featured “Artist of the Year” at a number of prestigious art shows/expos, placed in 12 stamp and print competitions, been commissioned to create for the Audubon Society handbooks and hired to develop the main character in a Walt Disney production. His works are housed in prominent permanent collections such as Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, Bennington Center For The Arts, American Airlines, First National Bank of South Africa and in many private and corporate collections around the world. His paintings have appeared for sale and re-sale at Christies Auction House, London, England. Isaac continues to participate in several important art competitions, including Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum’s prestigious “Birds in Art” exhibition, in which his art will have been featured 14 times and the Society of Animal Artists annual exhibition.
Terry is an accomplished teacher, and his approach to painting is outlined in his own book “Painting the Drama of Wildlife, Step by Step” now in its second edition (North Light Books, 1998). The book’s success led to the creation of a DVD, “Painting Wildlife in Acrylic” (Creative Catalyst, 2005). Terry’s art has also been featured in several other books, “Painting Birds Step by Step” (cover/North Light Books, 1996), “The Best of Wildlife Art” (cover/North Light Books, 1997), and “More Wildlife Painting Techniques of Modern Masters” (Watson-Guptill Publications, 1996). Terry continues to teach annual workshops, with students attending from all over the world.