Jared Paul Wilson
Colored pencil artist Jared Paul Wilson is a well-respected wildlife artist and Art Instructor at Brazosport High School in Freeport, Texas. With a well-rounded art background in drawing, ceramics and photography, Jared has developed a vast portfolio any aspiring artist would dream to emulate. His photorealistic rendering technique breathes life into his subjects, going beyond just imitating life. Already a published children’s book author, Jared offers some tips to success!
How long have you been drawing, and what drew you to art? (no pun intended)
I was “drawn” to art at an early age because my family did not having a lot of money. We could not afford to buy much during my childhood so I would create toys, books and costumes. Eventually my “doodles” evolved into more complex, entertaining and meaningful expressions.
How did you develop an interest in wildlife and western art?
Born and bred in and around Texas, I grew up in a strong family environment that fostered my curiosity and desire to explore the world around me with all the beauty it offered. I spent my childhood days filled with adventure as I explored nature and then would return to my house and fill pads of paper with all the amazing things I had encountered. Overtime, my love for southern culture and wildlife combined with innate talent and a fertile imagination guided me into the professional artist I am today.
Our little baby girl is a lot of fun. Finally, I have somebody to watch Saturday morning cartoons with, haha. But seriously, my creativity and storytelling has improved since having Lily Madison. Kids are always the best critiques and my baby’s attention span is not long, so she lets me know pretty quickly which story ideas are good and which ideas are bad.
What’s your creative process in regards to your books? What do you feel are some of the steps necessary to be successful?
I am always active in my artwork. In order to be creative I allow myself enough time to play. Through constant observation, imagination and creation I find stories worthy of pursuing that rise to the surface and eventually make their way onto paper. Another factor that I feel is key to being successful is a solid support team. My wife is nothing short of amazing when it comes to assisting me. In a sense she is the backbone of what I do and a voice that I can bounce ideas off of. I feel extremely fortunate to have her in my life.
What’s next for you, are you working on a new book?
This next year is shaping up to be very exciting. I have booked several solo museum exhibits for my wildlife and western artworks, scheduled radio interviews and elementary school visits and continue to promote my first children’s book, Shoe Fly, Don’t Bother Me. My next children’s book is already written and illustrated and I am in the early stages of shopping the manuscript to publishing houses and literary agents.
What are your favorite projects to work on? (ex: work for yourself, for clients?) Why?
At the core, every project I create is for myself, whether that is creating artworks for clients or picture books for children. It’s hard to differentiate myself and see one as more enjoyable than the other. The desired objective remains the same regardless of whatever I create – to share what I am passionate about with others and hopefully impact them in a positive way.
You have to love what you are doing enough to takes risks and jump over hurdles and break through all the walls that will be placed in front of you. It took me 7 years to finally get published, but I kept telling myself that I only needed one “Yes.” While the road to getting published can be grueling, I really feel I’m a better story teller and artist because of it. If you don’t have that kind of love for what it is you’re doing, you will stop at the first giant hurdle.
What is your favorite Prismacolor product? Can you tell us why?
I love to use Prismacolor Premier Soft Core Colored Pencils because of the level of detail they can generate and their ability to easily blend. I am constantly amazed by the product and how many new ways I discover to manipulate them in order to achieve desired results. Just recently I was in an art competition and they had accidentally placed all three of my artworks in the photo division. I don’t think you can get that type of meticulously detailed realism with any other medium. I am also seeing a growing appreciation for Prismacolor Premier Pencils through the world of art appreciators, evidenced in my own life through some of the solo exhibits I have been able to obtain.
My wife will groan when she reads this, but I happen to be the biggest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle fan to ever walk this planet….I wish I were kidding. One of my childhood dreams would be to create the cover of a TMNT comic using my Prismacolor approach – Nickelodeon, if you are listening…hint, hint…
Visit Jared’s website to see more work!
Guest writer Samantha DeCarlo