Artists working with the face and figure….Steve Hanks…..


This artist has gained worldwide fame for his wonderful paintings of women. The artist blends a variety of textures in his work such as skin, hair, and different fabrics and patterns in the sheets he places his characters in.

A lengthy piece showing some of the artist’s figure work.

The artist has a fantastic book out showing his art work titled “Moving On.”  The title had to do with the divorce he suffered thru when his wife left him. This was an interview done about the book by Canadian Television.

The artist was born in San Diego, California in 1949. The last two images from above were from where he has two books out. They are very nice collectors editions that go start between $100 – $300.

low price range: $5,000 original watercolor on board. Prints are available from $500 from –

high price range: $30,000 original watercolor on board.

As you can tell the artist is a fantastic painter of the female form. Wonderful skin tones with soft dappled light showing off the curves of figure. He first painted with watercolors on paper. Like myself he soon gave it up as he found painting was tough enough already to have to worry about the paper buckling. He then switched to aqua board.  A hardboard specially treated for working with watercolor.  Having used it myself I find it best for painting items that you might include 20 to 30 very light glazes. Maybe use a mixture of 5% paint and 95% water. The aquaboard is made by Ampersand and they have some wonderful finishes you can apply to your finished watercolor on board that will give it an oil painting quality and feel.

A great story for all artists, Steve Hanks was able to earn a great deal of money by drawing and selling posters of countries hottest rock and roll musicians. He was sixteen years old at the time and the family had moved from California to New Mexico.  Hanks didn’t react well to the move and spent much of his time alone, inside, and working on developing his artistic skills.

Attended college at the Academy of Fine Arts in San Francisco, California and the California College of Arts and Crafts. He received his bachelors degree from the latter school and it was here that he began to fall in love with the idea of portraying the female form.

The artist came to use watercolors after developing allergies to oil paints. Before finding watercolor and after his allergy discovery he worked as an etch-a-sketch artist, he even offered to be the official etch-a-sketch artist. The artist was featured on television and national magazines.

online and land based gallery:  E.S. Lawrence Gallery in Aspen, Colorado.

Try painting a figure on a quilt or piece of fabric with a pattern that you find interesting!

The artists own website-

Happy painting!




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