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 David William Mueller  (1963 - )

About: David William Mueller


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Lived/Active: Ohio/Illinois      Known for: figure, portrait, genre

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David William Mueller
An example of work by David William Mueller
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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following is from the artist, whose web site is

David Mueller was born in the Chicago suburb, Blue Island, on September 23, 1963, the second son of a cartoonist. The birth announcements were copies of an original pen and ink by his father Robert G. Mueller. The art depicted a stork, in a space suit in outer space, delivering the newborn with a caption reading "The Mueller's finally got one from The Twilight Zone". David's uncle Jim rendered cartoons for Hana Barbara Studios in California, his name scrolled by in credits for Spider Man and others. David's mother taught ceramics, needlepoint and macramé. One could say the art is in the gene's.

Only realizing his abilities in a high school vocational class during his senior year, he wasn't sure if art was it, just yet. David continued his formal education at a local community college where he studied liberal arts courses and art. Realizing that drawing and painting were his only real passions, he discontinued "regular" education to search for an art school.

Chicago offered at least a few choices in this area. The most notable was "The School of The Art Institute of Chicago" where a few years earlier, the young artist cashed in on a summer scholarship he won from a high school art contest. This school was reputable, but was not a perfect match. Ray Vogue Fashion Design didn't seem right either. Once the wide eyed student walked into the student galleries of The American Academy of art, he knew he was home.

Original work by the alumni, such notables as Haddon Sundblom (Coca-Cola Santa Claus), Gil Elvgren (WWII Pin-Up Girls) and Andrew Loomis among others intimidated, yet inspired him. David studied figure drawing, from live models, five days a week for two and a half years. The rest of the time was filled with solid fundamentals and practical skills to work as an artist. He built a commercial art portfolio, but stayed one extra semester to study oils under Ted Smuskiewicz and watercolor under Irving Shapiro. Richard Schmid was also an influence; he would come into the painting classes and give demonstrations. Mueller graduated in 1987.

After freelancing as a graphic designer/illustrator for a couple of years, he decided to pursue an illustration position in the city of Chicago. Ad agencies and the art studios that served them offered only "illustrator apprentice" positions. The "gopher" like job paid almost minimum wage and after eight months at Graziano, Krafft and Zale, N. Michigan Avenue., Chicago, David received an offer from Gibson Greetings in Cincinnati and took it.

He envisioned the dreaded possibility of painting cute little bunnies and Easter baskets, but for almost three years he honed his craft rendering impressionistic scenes of people, landscape and still life. This ironically perfect position turned out to be the best possible transition to the fine art world. David had known, since his oil and watercolor classes at the academy, that this was what he wanted all along.

After almost three years, a patron of the arts made David an offer he couldn't refuse. He matched David's salary and benefits, for two years, so that the young artist could pursue his career. For ten years after, David's work was in demand with patron's on a waiting list for commissioned works, portraits and genre scenes. His most notable subjects being official portraits of Governor's George Voinovich of Ohio and Nancy Hollister, the first woman Governor of Ohio.

Now aged 37, David has stopped the commissioned projects in favor of pursuing his artistic dreams even further. His painting travels have taken him to Italy ( more than once), London, Maine, Northern Michigan, Quebec and many other places. He continues to paint figurative genre, his favorite subject, and landscapes. Future travel plans include Monhegan Island, ME (summer 2001), Italy again and India some time in the future.

From 1990, he has been active in the Cincinnati Art Club, which has been a strong influence on his life and art. He also loves the work of John Singer Sargent, Anders Zorn, and the Russian Impressionists.

In October, 1992, he was featured in "Cincinnati Magazine" in an article titled 'It's the Real Thing,' and in March, 1993, "The Artists Magazine" referenced him in an article titled 'Five Steps to Powerful Oils."

David Mueller was honored with an Award of Excellence at the Oil Painters of America 2004 Eastern Regional Juried Exhibition.

Source: American Artist, March 2005

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