Artist Richard Clifton’s images are vivid and luminous portraits of the waterfowl he encounters near his home in coastal Delaware. When viewing his highly detailed and thoughtful pieces, it’s hard to believe that he is a self-taught artist who has also painted 44 duck stamps from various states. His work has been shown at some of the most prestigious Wildlife art shows throughout the United States, and his prints published by McGaw Graphics have continued to grow in popularity since they were released last Fall. Today we feature the impressive work of Richard Clifton with an interview with the artist below. See the Richard Clifton Print Collection:
Richard Clifton Artist Interview
MGI: What medium do you work with?
MGI: What inspires you? What artists inspire you?
RC: Lighting, from golden hour light to the flat light of fog or mist. I find it all inspiring, the way it bounces off birds and animals as well as their surroundings. The mood created by light across a field, marsh, or though the woods is often the inspiration for a new painting. I find that I'm influenced by many genres, not just other wildlife artist. There's alot of good work out there with various technique that is worth studying.
MGI: What are your hobbies (besides art)?
RC: Hunting, conservation and bird watching, especially when it comes to waterfowl. So while I hunt,I also spend time here on the farm working on habitat enhancement projects that help all wildlife. Having been a bass player I've been in and out of bands most of my adult life, ( although I,m not currently in a band and am not pursuing that hobby at this time ). I've also always been into racing, and was a 3 time league champion at an indoor Karting facility.
MGI: Describe your workspace:
RC: The studio is on the second story of my Gallery. Its spacious, and in many ways resembles a typical wildlife artist studio. Cardboard, frames, paint and brushes, mounted ducks and animals, lights, books and magazines...
MGI: How many years have you been an artist?
RC: Professionally, over 25 years.
MGI: Do you work in silence or with music? If music, what do you listen to?
RC: The majority of the time I work in silence. When I do listen to music, its classic rock.
MGI: If you were not an artist what would you do?
RC: We used to farm, so maybe a farmer/ rock star/ race car driver.
MGI: What jobs have you done besides being an artist?
RC: Well, farmer, and 3 days driving a Lance foods delivery van. (wasn't my thing).
MGI: What is your dream project?
RC: From a kid when I got into bird watching I always thought it'd be neat to illustrate a bird book or field guide.
MGI: Is there a painting or project that you are especially proud of?
RC: Winning the Federal Duck Stamp Contest in 2006 for the '07-'08 stamp was a huge accomplishment and honor. Second to that, being named Ducks Unlimited International artist of the year in 2015.
MGI: What is your favorite color?
RC: I'm not sure I have one. I've realized I don't use alot of blue for backgrounds in my originals, but I have nothing against the color. If your talking about an accent or trim color I like really dark green.