Gil Russell, artist and educator

Gil Russell would say he has been an artist all his life going back to his drive to draw and color at every spare moment. By the time he was ten years old he was drawing on a level well beyond his years, but what troubled him early on was the age old question about making a living as an artist. While in high school, representatives from the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles presented a film about their institution; game on!
With a strong work ethic and drive, Gil applied to Art Center. At the time ACCD accepted only fifty students a year from applications across the country and abroad. Gil was accepted! After more hard work, and many “all-nighters”, Gil graduated in the upper third of his class.

That first job was with Roch Advertising of Los Angeles, working for the man who built the Hollywood sign in the late 1920’s. He has also worked with Zee Toys/Intex, then spent the next few years as an Art Director with Tomy Corporation. After that came Tonka Toys, then self-employment working with Green Eagle, and Mara Design Associates.

Back in the early 90’s Gil knew he just could not go on in the commercial field even though it paid well. He walked away from it all and went back to his first love – Fine Art Painting! He has taught on the college level at Northwestern College, and Brown College. He was delighted to be the art teacher at Medicine Lake Lutheran Academy teaching children from grade one through twelve.

In Texas, Gil has worked with the Cordovan Art Scholl where he teaches drawing, watercolors, acrylics and oil painting. He also paints murals and many new paintings in a wide range of styles; traditional, impressionistic, and non-objective/modern. Gil is a “constructionist”; he believes that good painting is a building process.

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