John Armistead, an ordained minister, is an award-winning artist, author, and journalist. He began his first formal studio training with a private instructor at age eight in Mobile, Ala., working in pastel. At age nine, he began painting in oil. In addition to studying art in college, he has taken workshops at the Art Students League of New York, the National Academy of Design in New York, and Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts in Connecticut. Hundreds of his paintings are exhibited in libraries, museums and businesses throughout the United States and Europe.
In 1975, Mississippi Senator John C. Stennis presented one of Armistead’s paintings to the USS Nimitz to hang in the supercarrier’s stateroom.
Armistead, who lives in Tupelo, Miss., holds degrees from Mississippi College, the University of Mississippi, Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, and New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He has also studied at Sorrento Lingue in Sorrento, Italy. He has pastored churches in Mississippi, California and Hawaii, and was formerly religion editor for the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal in Tupelo. He has served as interim pastor of Unity Presbyterian Church USA in Lee County, Miss., since 2008.
He is the author of three mystery novels, A Legacy of Vengeance, A Homecoming for Murder, and Cruel as the Grave. His novel for young people, The $66 Summer, was named by the New York Public Library as one of the best books for teenagers published in 2000. His novel, The Return of Gabriel, is used in many schools throughout the nation in teaching about the civil rights era and was selected a Sunshine State Readers Award Book in 2006 by the Florida Public Schools.
He is a member of Mystery Writers of America, The Author’s Guild, the Portrait Society of America, and the Harley Owners Group (HOG).