Ron Elstad's art work, such as that of good wine, has improved decisively during his thirty years as a professional artist. He began his profession soon after graduating from Santa Ana College in 1976 with an AA degree in communications. His first segment was a twelve year period as a freelance illustrator. In 1989 he turned his efforts toward his long time dream of being a painterly-style fine artist. Ron's first action was to engage in studies with Dan McCaw for a period of a year. From here he went on teaching himself by way of making intense studies directly from the original paintings of the well-known impressionist's masters of the turn-of-the-century. The knowledge and emotional inspiration achieved from these intense studies ignited the fires in his creative soul. This and other similar ignitions along the way have proven invaluable in culminating the integral quality and great beauty found in his work today.
Ron Elstad, The Truth of Light's Presence, Newport Beach, CA, Oil on Canvas, 24" x 30"
Because of the hard work and dedication invested by Ron, he went on to achieve a higher degree of excellence which is realized by his numerous awards. Among these awards are two gold medals and a best of show, which he won at the Society of Illustrators' prestigious annual Illustrations west show in 1989. Being a best of show winner, he was presented with the "Joseph Henninger award". This award was the highest and most prestigious award given to an illustrator on the west coast at the time. Ron's "best of show" painting received further acclaim when it was published full page in Communication Art Magazine, which was a highly regarded publication in the industry. Later he went on to win a bronze award from Art of California Magazine's discovery awards competition in 1993-94. Some time later he was accepted by a jury of his peers to participate in the first, second and fourth annual Oil Painters of America exhibit in Chicago Illinois. Because of this achievement he was bestowed the honor and privilege of a signature membership status. Furthermore, Ron is also a long time standing artist member of the renowned California Art Club.
Ron Elstad, A Simple Place of Worship, Abiqui, NM, Oil on Canvas, 16" x 20"
A brief selection of Ron Elstad's collectors include: Ms. Joan Irvine Smith; who was once noted by Art and Antiques magazine as being one of the top one hundred collectors, Mr. Jean Stern - esteemed Historian, Author and director of the Irvine Museum, Mr. J.P. Warmington - president and CEO of Warmington Homes and the United States Air force. His list of collectors continues to grow and expand into Europe and Japan.
Ron Elstad, Nesting on Top of the World, Anaheim Hills, CA, Oil on Canvas, 30" x 24"
The ideals I possess empowers the goals that drive me as a painter to paint with a mindset that I'm creating initially for those collectors who possess the highest subjectivity level of appreciation, without discounting those others who might enjoy my work as well... regards.
In order to accomplish this... I have dedicated myself to paint the best I can muster at all times regardless of any possible adverse consequences. The best I can muster means I take the time and efforts to research all the art work of those artists who have gone before me, without copying their work, but using my own voice, to actually realize what level of ability I have to attain in order to produce such work.
Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota - 1944.
An AA Degree in Advertising Communications from Santa Ana College, 1976 (continued from LA Trade Technical College, 1967)
Two Semesters of Illustration Techniques with Dan McCaw at the Art Center School of Design, 1980
Oil painting workshops with Dan McCaw, 1980 & 81
Signature member of the Oil Painters of America
Artist Member of the California Art Club
Former Member of the Laguna Beach Museum’s Historical Collection Council and board member of the Society of Illustrators, Los Angeles, CA
TWO GOLD MEDALS AND A BEST OF SHOW: Society of Illustrator’s annual West Show – 1989
BRONZE AWARD: Art of California Magazine’s Discovery Awards Competition – 1993
AWARD OF EXCELENCE: Oil Painters of America’s annual juried national and regional competitions - 1992, 93, 94 & 95
AWARD OF EXCELENCE: California Art Club’s – 85th, 86th, 87th, 88th, 89th, 90th, 91st, 92nd & 93rd annual Gold Medal Exhibition – 1994, 95, 96, 97, 98, 2000, 2001 & 2003
SPECIAL EXHIBITIONS: (selected)
- Oil Painters of America’s annual juried national art exhibit, Chicago Illinois – 1992 & 93, San Antonio, Texas – 1995
- Oil Painters of America’s first annual juried regional art exhibit,
- The Oaks, spring and fall, ClassicsJoan Irvine Smith’s thoroughbred horse ranch, San Juan Capistrano, CA. 1992, 93, 94 & 95
- Carnegie Art Museum, Oxnard, CA. – 1994
- California Art Club (Old Mill Gallery) San Marino, CA. 2001 & 2002
- Pacific Asian Museum, Pasadena, CA.- paintings of old China Town, 2002
- Arizona: A Millennium of Arizona Art, Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery, Tucson, AZ 2007
- 2007 - Santa Fe Fall Small Works Show and Sale by Gallery Artists, Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery, NM
- 2012 - Landscapes of the West, Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
- 2012 - 4th Annual Small Works Show and Sale, Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
The United States Air Force, Washington, DC.
Mrs. Joan Irvine Smith, San Juan Capistrano, CA. (founder of the Irvine Museum)
Mr. Jean Stern, Irvine, CA. (art historian, lecturer and director of the Irvine Museum)
Mr. James P. Warmington, Newport Beach, CA. (President and CEO of Warmington Homes, Costa Mesa, CA.)
Return to Ron Elstad's Paintings
Ron Elstad, Most of Us Can Only Dream, Laguna Beach, CA, Oil on Canvas, 30" x 40"
Ron Elstad's Studio