Meet Dave Barnhouse. You'll be glad you did.
Dave is an all-American boy, who's every bit as comfortable behind the wheel of his John Deere, as he is in front of the easel. He's a man of simple passions, who paints the things that he knows and loves.
To sit with Dave in his little, cabin-esque art studio, you would never guess that this humble man was one of our nation's most valued and accomplished painters. But a look at any of Dave's canvases tells the story.
These paintings are more than attractive home décor. Dave's paintings are a window into the heart of small town USA. To times and places where the air is clear and life is just plain good.
Learn some more about the man who brings it all to life…
Dave was raised in Richmond, Ohio, the little town that he still calls home. Dave's father made his living in the steel mill (the same work that Dave would eventually take to raise his own family).
School held little interest for Dave. In fact, Dave's mother famously said that the only reason he made it through at all was to stay on the football team. If she was exaggerating, it wasn't by much.
No matter the lesson, Dave's mind would wonder to the world outside the schoolhouse walls, to the fields and houses and barns. The town squares, cars, motorcycles and trucks. And the people, always the people.
You'll see these themes throughout Dave's paintings. Some would call it classic Americana, but for Dave Barnhouse, it's just the parts of a good life that drew him in.
Dave's artwork really took flight as a second career after decades of work in the steel mill. Fans might say that this wonderful run began with the print run of Dave's first commercially successful painting “Repairs”.
But family and friends know better. That's because drawing and painting have always been a part of life for Dave. Before he learned that he could make a living at it, creating art had been a consistent lifelong pleasure. The proof is in a thousand creations in garages, bedroom walls, scraps of paper and cardboard, even a giant mural outside the local high school.
When Dave finally decided to put his talent to the test, he discovered that he had something special. The images that he creates remind people of a treasured time. Sure, it's the carefully rendered automobiles, and landscapes. But it's also the men, women and children that live in these beautiful settings. Each one has a story to tell.
From that first painting until now, Dave has never looked back. He's been grateful for every moment that he gets to do the work he loves.
Above anything else, Dave Barnhouse is a Christian. If the church doors are open, you'll know where to find him.
For many years Dave and his family sang and played southern gospel music, even touring for a time. The family continue to serve in the church, and there's no greater point of pride for Dave than the knowledge that all of his children and grandchildren are living for the lord.
Perhaps the smartest thing that Dave's done was marrying Marie, his wife of over 50 years.
Together they raised their four children Brent, Kim, Brock, and Jami. Dave and Marie are proud of their kids, grandkids, and entire family. There are too many to list here, but you'll see them.
All of Dave's family has been used as models for characters in his paintings.
That's just about right too. The warmth of love found in the brush strokes of his work are more than calculated depictions. Dave's paintings are the overflow of a happy American life.