Andy Thomas is not only an immensely talented artist, but also a storyteller with the images he creates. His subject matter consists of a variety of images from historical events to intimate moments of everyday life. He says he's "currently living a second childhood painting action westerns." The artist’s desire to create is funneled into the area of painting realism that ranges from very loose to very tight. Thomas’s medium is primarily oil, with pen and ink a second favorite, but he also works in watercolor, charcoal, pencil, and ink wash. He is also a very accomplished sculptor.
Primarily self-taught, Thomas began his career as a professional artist in 1991 after sixteen years with a major advertising agency. In his studio, the artist creates his unique paintings that tell their stories. Thomas says, ‘I never consciously ponder elements of design or principals of design…I rely on my sketches to refine a value scheme as a starting point. They also help me visualize the completed painting and consider light, painting technique, subject or object importance, and other considerations. The viewer’s eye-path is a big influence on the composition at this point and all through the painting process.’ Thomas’s style has been compared to Russell and Remington, and artist says he also has been influenced by Howard Pyle, Richard Schmid, Norman Rockwell, and others.
Many of Thomas’s historical images have been used in books and as book covers, and his various paintings also have been featured in numerous magazines. The artist’s original works are in many private and corporate collections and also in the permanent collections of museums around the country.
Thomas exhibits in several shows annually, the most recent being the 2006 C. M. Russell Art Auction where he sold eight original paintings. The artist also enjoys judging art shows and teaching children and adult painting classes. He is a talented writer and published a book containing over 100 color images of his work, along with stories written by him.
Charlie Russell and His Characters set a record at the C. M. Russell Art Auction selling for $180,000 -- the highest price ever paid at that auction for a piece by an artist other than Russell himself. Bidding was brisk, and Steve Zabel (of Montana Trails gallery in Bozeman) outbid Denver Broncos football great John Elway to win the piece.
The artist is a member of the famed Salmagundi Club in New York, The Portrait Society of America, and other art organizations. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Missouri Southern State University with a BS in Marketing Management.