|Biography from Richard Schmid Fine Art Auction:|
|CAPTURING THE HEART OF PAINTING|
After high school, James Biggers
spent a couple of years at Oklahoma City University, before
transferring to Central State University in Oklahoma. It was here
that he rekindled his passion for art. His coursework at the
University, however, left him searching for more.
University really focused on abstract art. And while I enjoyed
this type of painting, it wasn’t really what I wanted to do." He
found what he was looking for in Father Walsh, a Catholic Priest who
used his artistic abilities to create calendars and posters for the
Catholic Church. It was Father Walsh who taught him the finer
points of representational art, and Biggers was immediately hooked.
"Father Walsh really fostered my love of painting. I doubt I’d be
where I am today without his guidance and encouragement."
he graduated from Central State, Biggers realized his education was
just beginning. There was much he still needed to learn in order to
become the painter he wanted to be. He first started working on
his techniques in commercial art. It was during this time that he
developed his strong design skills - a characteristic that is very
evident in all of his paintings. After Biggers moved to Colorado
with his wife, Mary, he continued honing his skills, while painting
By the early nineties, Biggers’ hard work was
starting to pay off. He was showing in several regional and
national juried exhibitions as well as invitational shows throughout
the country. It was about this time that he was able to achieve
another of his long-time goals. "Even before I moved to Colorado, I
knew about Richard Schmid. I had always wanted to study with him,
and as luck would have it, he moved into my backyard." Biggers joined a
group of select artists who, along with Schmid, would get together and
paint on a regular basis. They spent four years together,
learning from each other, and from one of the finest contemporary
painters in the country. "Richard really helped me grow, not just as a
painter, but as an artist. I will always be thankful for the
opportunity I had, and all that he gave to me."
While in the
process of developing his technical painting skills, Biggers discovered
something else essential to art, and impossible to teach. He
calls it the "heart" of the painting. "At some point, you have to put
something of yourself into your painting, and until you do that, you’ll
never have a great painting." It’s the heart of the painting that James
strives to portray. He uses the skills he has developed over the
years to bring this essence to life. And while he realizes the
importance of proper form, he also firmly believes that great
techniques don’t always make a great painting. "Technique is what gets
people to walk up to your painting, heart is what keeps them there."
also believes that the best way to capture the heart of a painting is
to paint from life and to continually search for new subjects to paint.
"I’m always looking for interesting subjects, I can’t paint the same
thing over and over. I need new scenes and new inspirations." His
desire to paint different settings from life has led him to take
numerous expeditions across the globe. He has traveled extensively
throughout theWestern United States, Alaska, and Europe. He has
found scenes in tropical places such as, Costa Rica, Hawaii, and Mexico
that appealed to him. Biggers goes where the paintings are, and
the paintings are always there, wherever he goes.
merely new scenes that James sets out to paint, but new feelings.
He strives to give his paintings depth, so that the viewer can go
beyond what initially drew them to the painting and discover within it
the emotions it was painted with. It’s not enough for him to
simply paint a breathtaking scene, or interesting subject, his goal
with every painting is to portray the reason why that particular
subject moved him. "I don’t know any other way to make that kind of
connection with the viewer than by painting from life."
connection with the viewer is what Biggers is always attempting to
accomplish. To him the true measure of himself as an artist is not how
many master-works he paints, but rather the extent to which people are
moved by those paintings. "When someone comes to me and tells me that
they’ve had one of my paintings for years, and they can still feel the
emotions of it, then I know I’ve succeeded as an artist."
continues to succeed as an artist while living and painting in the
Poudre Canyon of Colorado. With no desire to remain stationary,
he still has many quests yet to take. Because with each new painting,
he grows a little, and other doors open to him. He describes it as the
most frustrating, and rewarding, aspect about being an artist. "I don’t
think I will ever get to where I want to be, and yet, I can never quit
striving to get there."
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