Kyle Sims paints highly realistic scenes of North America’s wildlife, including bear, bighorn sheep, bison, deer, elk, moose, mountain goat, pronghorn, and river otter, as well as diverse members of the canine and feline families.
He was born and raised near Cheyenne, where his parents encouraged his artistic instincts early on. By 13, Sims began to focus on animal painting, inspired particularly by the widely published Belgian animalier Carl Brenders (b. 1937). Within three years, the boy started to attend workshops taught by talents like Paco Young, Terry Isaac, and Daniel Smith, who encouraged him to admire such historical forerunners as Wilhelm Kuhnert, Carl Rungius, Bob Kuhn, and Joaquín Sorolla, plus living role models like Richard Schmid and Clyde Aspevig. Because they dry quickly, Sims started out painting in acrylics, but now focuses on oils.
Sims went on to earn his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana, the location of which allowed him to explore the scenic Beartooth Mountains regularly. He has been observing nature ﬁrsthand ever since, examining its details up close and working outdoors in all kinds of weather. “Painting on location,” Sims explains, “trains you to see and interpret how life really looks to the eye, rather than to the camera. If I go outside and make a really ﬁne ﬁeld study, it’s so much more satisfying than anything else I could do. I love the sketchy spontaneity of painting in the ﬁeld — and I’m out to capture that same look and feel in my studio work.”
Indeed, in addition to being impeccably accurate, Sims’s scenes possess a sense of atmosphere that transcends documentation, and he is particularly admired for his compositions, which often crop out portions of the animal’s form to bring us closer to the action.
View more wildlife art by Kyle Sims at www.kylesims.com.