39th Annual Art Competition: Animal/Wildlife Category

39th Annual Art Competition: Animal/Wildlife Category


We are pleased to have below the winners for the 39th Annual Art Competition in the Animal/Wildlife Category. For the full list of winners overall and in all other categories, please see the links at the end of the post.

First Place: Kathryn Hansen

A Tweetable Moment by Kathryn Hansen (colored pencil on Pastelmat, 15×20)

One day while working in the backyard, I photographed my cat, Kotie, lying on our garage stoop. Years later, I decided to draw her. A Tweetable Moment isn’t a typical pet portrait because I kept Kotie hidden in shadows behind the grasses. I added the wren, spotlighted by the sun and unaware of the cat. Kotie was actually fast asleep in the heat of a summer’s day, but in the painting, I opened one of her eyes in order to connect the two animals and their separate areas of the painting.

“At first, this painting may appear to be solely about the cat, but a closer look rewards the viewer with the complete narrative. Touches of white direct the eye to the cat’s face, then the cat’s gaze and the angled grasses lead the eye to the bird.” — Kris Parins, Juror

Second Place: Dan Knepper

The Cutting Horse by Dan Knepper (oil on canvas, 24×18)

When painting The Cutting Horse, I hoped to create a timeless scene that could have taken place either 150 years ago or yesterday. I wanted the viewer to smell the cattle, the horses and the veil of dust. I like to think this warm image appeals to the child in all those who once dreamed of growing up to be cowboys or cowgirls.

“The careful composition and atmospheric perspective pull the viewer directly into the scene. Colors are muted by dust clouds and harsh sunlight, yet with a minimum of detail, the artist makes us feel the heat, smell the dust and hear the lowing of the cattle.” — Kris Parins, Juror

Third Place: Paul B. Dixon

Menu Selection! by Paul B. Dixon (oil on linen, 18×47)

During dry winter months in the northern region of Namibia, herds of various species congregate around waterholes, affording predators stalking opportunities. Animals scatter, kicking up huge clouds of dust. Menu Selection! cuts off the zebras on both sides of the painting, implying there’s more going on outside the picture. Living the experience in the bush is an integral part of my work. Quick on-site sketches catch things missed by the camera and aid my memory as I paint in the studio.

“This work is all about action and atmosphere. The masterfully depicted predator and prey communicate the intensity of the moment through their body language, all within a compressed color palette. A strong horizontal format reinforces the movement of the hunt.” — Kris Parins, Juror

Full List

For the metal winners and the top three in each category, please see below:


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