Wildlife Artist to Teach Workshop at Rockefeller Institute

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Wildlife artist to teach workshop at Rockefeller InstitutePETIT JEAN MOUNTAIN – Combine a love of the outdoors with a passion for painting, and you get wildlife artist Duane Hada.

Hada, an experienced and energetic art instructor, avid outdoorsman and professional fly fishing guide, will teach a wildlife painting workshop Oct. 30 through Nov. 2 at the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute on Petit Jean Mountain. The workshop is part of Art Escapes Fall 2008.

During the three-day workshop, Hada will teach students how to realistically and accurately depict various wildlife subjects in their natural habitats using water-based acrylic paint. Although workshop participants are not required to paint wildlife indigenous to the area, Hada prefers to stick with what he knows.

“There’s something about the soul, the spirit and the energy that goes through a painting once you have passion for it and knowledge of it,” Hada says. “You paint best with what you know.”

Wildlife artist to teach workshop at Rockefeller InstituteThe primary themes of Hada’s paintings are fly-fishing and the wildlife and landscapes of the Ozark Mountains and White River. As a native of the Ozarks, Hada has been immersed in the region’s landscapes and its diverse plant and animal life his entire existence.

“Since I was a young man, I’ve observed natural beauty, and I’ve always been a wildlife lover. I think my paintings come from being a keen observer and just having the passion for wanting to try to duplicate what I see, especially if it’s wildlife or landscape,” Hada says.

In his paintings, Hada aims to make viewers feel as if they are part of a particular scene by placing the animal in a situation rather than simply painting a portrait of the animal. When a painting depicts an actual scene, Hada says, it comes to life.

“I think the thing that separates a good wildlife painter from someone who just paints a portrait of a wildlife subject is the ability to create that mood or feel or capture that special moment that we occasionally get to see in nature. I want my paintings to make others feel as if they were part of that environment.”

Wildlife artist to teach workshop at Rockefeller InstituteHada has won numerous awards in the field of wildlife painting, including the Midsouth Watercolor Society Best of Show award in 2007. In addition, collectors and state agencies have prized Hada’s wildlife paintings for years. His work has been selected to appear on trout stamps, calendars, educational posters, and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission trout license plate. In his most recent project, Hada is painting the waterway ecosystems of the state for the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.

“It’s fulfilling when someone that really knows wildlife sees my work and connects to the same inspiration and feeling that I put into it,” Hada says.

During Art Escapes Fall 2008, Hada will help participants achieve success and improvement in their wildlife painting, regardless of their skill levels. Those who are interested can register online at www.uawri.org. A commuter workshop with lunch only is $325 and a commuter workshop with lunch and dinner is $400. The price of an all-inclusive workshop, which includes overnight accommodations at the Rockefeller Institute’s Lodge and Conference Center, ranges from $540 to $595, depending on the lodging option.

Wildlife artist to teach workshop at Rockefeller InstituteDuane Hada lives in the small Baxter County town of Cotter. He and his wife, Marlene, own and operate Rivertown Gallery, which features Duane’s original wildlife art and showcases the art of fly fishing and the Ozark landscape.

To learn more about Duane Hada and to view samples of his work, visit www.rivertowngallery.com.

Hada is one of three instructors for Art Escapes Fall 2008. The other workshops are Plein-Air Oil Painting with Bill Garrison and Watercolor Painting with Gloria Garrison. For more information about Art Escapes contact Julie Hall, program coordinator at the Rockefeller Institute, at (501) 727-6220 or jhall [at] uawri [dot] org.

For more information on the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute of the University of Arkansas System, visit www.uawri.org or call (501) 727-5435.