Hal Stanford, Austin Texas Member Since May 2009 Artist Statement Hal Stanford was born in San Antonio, Texas on March 29, 1954. Both his parents were hobby artists, giving Hal many years of useful training in the basics of visual art. After graduating from Edison High School in 1972, Hal moved to Dallas where he attended the prestigious Dallas Art Institute. He soon found that the desire to become a professional artist was available to him if he “just got out there” and worked hard to achieve his goals. Hal was making a name for himself as a talented local artist when the Roughton Galleries in Dallas saw he had a talent for painting which they believed the buying public would relate to. Soon they were displaying his paintings of World War I airplanes as well as paintings of some of Nature’s most beautiful Wonders. A steady stream of sales encouraged Hal to immerse himself into his painting career. Later, economic hardships forced Hal to relocate to San Antonio where he soon established himself in the local art scene. The Lone Star Brewery commissioned Hal to paint an exterior mural depicting the 100 year history of San Antonio that coincided with the Brewery’s own 100 years. One thousand three hundred square feet later, Hal had captured the colorful history of one of the nation’s most historic cities. The Buckhorn Hall of Horns Museum and its exciting outdoor mural soon became the number two tourist attraction in San Antonio, next to the Alamo. Often Hal found himself before a busload of tourists as he was climbing up on scaffolding, explaining the “story” behind the historic scene he was airbrushing on the 10’ by 130’ walls. A very large unveiling and ribbon cutting ceremony was produced by the Brewery with many City officials, as well as several area military leaders, to finally witness the finished mural Hal had worked on for one year and two weeks on site. Hal lost both his parents in the early ‘80’s, but continued to apply himself to his growing art career. The birth of his son, Yasha, was soon followed by a commission from Sea World of Texas to work on a mural at their new San Antonio based theme park. The “Food Chain” mural separates the North from South Pole areas contained within the “Penguin Encounter”. A couple years later an even larger theme park entered the San Antonio area and it wasn’t long before Fiesta Texas asked Hal to come out to their building site and begin painting a series of exterior murals that extended throughout the Park. About five months was spent painting around bulldozers and costumed singers and dancers! After the birth of his beautiful daughter, Rachael, many exciting art projects passed over his drawing table. This included designing large interior sports banners for San Antonio’s own domed stadium, the Alamodome, and even producing a painting commemorating Pope John Paul’s visit to the City in 1987. The Plaza Riverwalk Hotel had Hal and his crew of assistants paint a colorful Pacific Mexican Coast scene mural that after nearly six months became a seven thousand square foot attraction, drawing tourist traffic from the nearby historic San Fernando Cathedral and Main Plaza. This huge mural was finished in the Spring of ’94, and in the Summer of ’95 Hal was forced to undergo a serious brain operation that didn’t go well, leaving him paralyzed on his entire left side. A loving family and group of friends, plus Hal’s ever present personal determination, led him back from this dark period to where he is today – once again painting and producing a high level of visually exciting art pieces. Hal’s youth was spent growing up around his Father’s love for aviation and his Mother’s love of Nature. His adult years saw both these interests come out in his choice of subjects for his paintings. Now, after living close to the beautiful Texas Hill Country, a constant source of inspiration to Hal, his art career is once again active and growing.