Famous Illustrator Gives Students Glimpse into an Art Career

Famous Illustrator Gives Students Glimpse into an Art Career
Posted on 02/02/2018
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CF payne speaking at Lakota West“Everything around you has passed through the hands of an artist.”

With these words of wisdom, illustrator C.F. Payne encouraged aspiring student artists at Lakota West Thursday evening to consider the countless possibilities of a career in art. More than 80 students, and their parents, packed into the community room to learn about his long and successful career in illustration.

In the five years that the Lakota West visual arts department has been sharing the artist with students, It was the first time it was moved to the evening so that parents could enjoy the special visitor, too. He joked about society’s caricature of the starving or eccentric artist, while pointing out that everything from fashion, buildings, and cars to movies, videogames and even packaging requires some level of artistic expression.

Like so many careers, a future career in art will likely look far different than his did, he shared. He rushed through the extensive overview of his career to focus on the evolving world of professional art and also to share a live painting demonstration.

But, he warned, success in the field doesn’t come without extensive discipline and dedication. “Mediocrity is not in demand. You have to look at, study and make art all the time.”

“For our students and their parents to hear from such a prestigious and respected name in the art world is an opportunity no lesson can top,” said Lakota West art teacher Stephanie Gauer. “It’s critically important that they can visualize where their passion and talent for art can take them at the next stage of their lives.”

Payne’s work has graced the pages and covers of several publications and children’s books such as Time Magazine, Sports Illustrated, Reader’s Digest, and U.S. News and World Report. His illustrated novel, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and the bio-documentary, C.F. Payne: An American Illustrator are among some of his newest efforts. For the last 30 years, he’s also taught illustration courses at the university level.

Pictured: C.F. Payne speaks with students at parents at Lakota West.