Jason Walcott has always been a creative person, ever since he was a small child. It seemed only natural that his career should be focused in the arts. He was born in Trenton, MI which is about 25 miles south of Detroit. When he was four years old in 1975 his family moved to the east coast…first to Pomona, NY, then Dover, NJ and finally Randolph, NJ in 1983, where Jason remained until college.
“My grandmother on my dad’s side was a painter. When I was a small child, I would go down to the basement where she had her small studio set up and play with (i.e., waste) her paints. She never got mad…she was the one who explained to a very frustrated 6 year old that you couldn’t rinse off oil paints in water. Ever since, I have been fascinated with them! I remember her encouraging me to try my hand at painting for real and even took me to the local college bookstore to buy supplies.”
Jason’s first year in college at the University of Maryland College Park, he went with the idea of being an architect. Quickly, he realized what he loved about it was the drawing and design…the math and physics not so much. After two years at Maryland he took a year off, then transferred to Kean University in New Jersey where he earned his BFA in Illustration and graduated cum laude. While at Kean, his Illustration degree required many classes in fine art and graphic design. After relocating to the Los Angeles area in 1997, he worked for several years in the graphic design field before going into business for himself as a typeface designer. As luck would have it, he found great success with that career and actually became somewhat well known in the graphic arts & advertising industry for his font designs.
“My typefaces have been used by Disney, Hershey’s, Conde Nast, Vanity Fair, The Food Network and HGTV just to name a few. To say it is an honor that my work was selected by such venues is an understatement.”
Jason’s creative endeavors have lead down many paths from designing fonts to making Halloween folk art, building architectural models from scratch, composing music and baking…all of which are arts in their own way.
Through it all, remained his dedication to painting and fine art. Over the years he has strived to continue developing his style which incorporates a love for dramatic lighting, rich color and juicy brushwork. In recent years several of his paintings have won awards in the Visual Arts competition of the Orange County Fair in Costa Mesa, CA.
“I have always loved paintings which look like paintings, where you can really see the brush strokes. My inspirations include Old Masters such as Rembrandt, Vermeer and Caravaggio. I love the richness of oil paints as well as the process of the medium. There is nothing quite so lovely as the smell of linseed oil mixed with a touch of pure gum turpentine to get the creative juices flowing. Aside from oils, over the past few years I have also fallen in love with soft pastels (the dry kind). The depth of color and immediacy of pastels knows no equal. To really get in there and touch the medium you are working with while painting is a different experience from using oils.
My journey as an artist will never be complete—and thank goodness! If I ever ‘arrived’ at some pinnacle where I couldn’t go up any more, where’s the fun in that? It really is about the journey, not the destination.”