I was born in North Dakota, grew up in Southern Illinois, got a degree in painting at the University of Illinois, and then moved to Oregon. I have worked as an illustrator for various educational publishers and have always enjoyed portraying nature and a little fantasy. I have a family, a garden, and animal companions.
I chose these pieces to share some of the subjects and themes that have driven my art since an early age- an interest in plants and animals- real and imagined- portraits, and the hidden details of what we might notice beyond the first glance. I hope you enjoy the rest of my portfolio, and thanks for taking a look through my eyes.
A portion of a pencil portrait from life
A small pencil sketch, from a photograph
by Thornton Burgess
I guess I always wanted to be an illustrator. Here is a very early example , in crayon.
This is a cropped version of "Pale Rider," and entry to a Dia de Los Muertos show. See the entire image under Portfolio > Other Paintings. It was inspired by a trail ride: I was startled by a barred owl on a branch, but my horse was more interested in the grass.