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Mark Lee Howard
Born: 1951; U.S.A.
Mark Lee Howard, known as "the man behind the pen", was born on December 23, 1951 in Oakland, CA. As a son of a navy officer whose family moved frequently, Howard had the opportunity to observe wildlife in many varied habitats and to develop a lifelong love of nature. He first began creating artworks in 1963 at the age of thirteen. While living in Olathe, Kansas he experimented with pencil, pen, and ink. His artistic abilities flourished and in 1969 he won first place in the National Scholastic Awards- Graphic Art Edition. This accomplishment fueled Howard’s drive to become an artist.
After his graduation from Arlington Heights High School in Illinois, Howard entered the College of the Sequoias in Visalia, California. Desiring further study, he then attended Fresno State University in Fresno, California. A self-taught artist, Howard continued to paint and found that he was most attracted to artists that "provoke a passion and beauty of life for others through their images." He is particularly inspired and influenced by the work of Salvador Dali, Carl Brenders, John Seery-Lester, Daniel Smith, and Simon Combes.
Howard has been an artist for thirty-six years during which time he has participated in various exhibitions and has received various awards for his work. Since 1999 Howard has acquired international recognition as a wildlife artist, particularly after he was featured in "Wildlife Art" Magazine (Jan/Feb 1999 issue.)
Howard’s most important aspect of art is to creatively express his love and concern for wildlife in hopes of drawing attention to the importance of preserving nature’s beauty and balance. As an advocate for preservation of threatened and endangered species, Howard explains, "I’ve dedicated my artistic talents to that field. My photo realistic renderings remind viewers of the natural beauty we are so close to destroying forever." He continues, "I find myself deeply drawn into each new subject almost as though I actually become a part of the animal; its personality, unique features, and purpose for existing. If my images evoke feelings of beauty, joy, or concern for protecting the wonders of nature, I have succeeded."
Today Howard lives in Fresno, California with his pet cats, raccoons, iguana, and snakes. His beautiful artwork is owned by collectors around the world, including the United States, Canada, and Great Britain.