The most prestigious online art competition, AMERICAN ART AWARDS, decided by the 25 Best Galleries & Museums in America, had accomplished painters, photographers, digital artists and sculptors enter online images this year from 63 countries:
BIO OF 1ST PLACE WINNER DANGUOLE SERSTINSKAJA (last year’s MASTERPIECE WINNER): “I am a Lithuanian artist focusing on hyper-realistic animal paintings. I grew up in lush and untouched Lithuanian nature which developed a deep emotional connection with it. My decades of experience bringing up various animals inspired me to create art that focuses on them, expressing their characters, souls, poses and all the details. I hope my art helps people form a deeper connection with animals and contribute to the welfare of the animal world.” https://petdrawings.net/
BIO OF 1ST PLACE WINNER SHELLY J. COX: Born 1965 / A graduate of the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale in Fashion Illustration, Shelly has worked as a freelance artist for 26 years. Along the way, she became obsessed with portraiture, reading books, watching videos, and attending portrait workshops, all to learn the art of portraiture. In addition to attending the Miami Portrait Academy with well-known portrait artists David Chang, Hodges Soileau and Kerry Vosler, Shelly traveled to La Crosse, WI to attend the Baumgaertner Atelier. She is a member of The Portrait Society of America which provides her with access to highly accomplished mentors. Currently Shelly is being mentored by the ARC Living Master artist Tina Garrett. Shelly is focused on pushing her artistic creativity and is actively painting a new series that will show more imaginative figure work. Since working with her mentor, Shelly’s work has received several artistic awards. She is the creator of SJC Sport Couture a clothing line that features her fine art paintings.
BIO OF 1ST PLACE WINNER Shelly J. Cox (continued): Shelly’s learning process includes studying paintings by the Masters of the past and the great artists of today. She states, “In being a self- taught artist, each painting brings me a feeling of integrity and accomplishment.” While Shelly often paints portraits in the classical style, she has also developed a distinct modern portrait style she calls her “Rockwellian” style portraiture. This developed after she intensely studied the works of Norman Rockwell. For this series, Shelly uses the pseudonym Norma Cockwell. She has been painting commissioned portraits since 2007. www.shellyjcox.com