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Early Influences

Influential Figures and Artistic Journeys: Shaping My Path in Sculpture and Bronze Casting

Throughout my artistic journey, several influential figures played pivotal roles in shaping my passion for sculpture and bronze casting. While Dr. Fairbanks was a significant influence, my earliest inspirations came from my parents. My father, a university art teacher at BYU, and my mother, the director of the renowned Springville Museum of Art, nurtured my artistic development from a young age. At just 10 years old, my father would compare my drawings with his university students' works, providing valuable feedback and encouragement.
Another key influence was Rell G Francis, who introduced me to Hughs Curtis, a renowned cowboy artist. Under Curtis' guidance, I began working for Neil Hadlock at his foundry in Vineyard, Utah, near the Geneva Steel Mill. Neil became one of the most crucial influences in my journey, setting the standard by which I measured all other foundries.
From Dell Weston and Shidoni foundries in Santa Fe to Nordhammer and Artwerks in the Bay Area, as well as Richard Young Studios in Salt Lake City and Bronze Art and American Bronze in Florida, I encountered various foundries, each evaluated against Neil's high standards.

Among the foundries I worked with, Rick Frignoca's Bronze Art in Sarasota, Florida, came closest to surpassing the quality set by Neil's foundry, earning my admiration and respect. My time at Neil's foundry also allowed me to meet remarkable and successful artists. Dennis Smith, with his comedic charm, left a lasting impression, while Grant Speed, a master with both his art and lariat, taught us the art of rope throwing.

During my artistic journey, I had the opportunity to create a coin for the Sesquicentennial, meticulously copying Cyrus Dallin's iconic Paul Revere statue. Additionally, I replicated Dallin's Protest Bronze, which is housed in the Springville Museum, showcasing my appreciation for his work and its influence on my own artistic endeavors.
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