Rick Anderson is a nationally acclaimed artist whose career has spanned more than 40 years. A native of Clarksdale in the Mississippi Delta, he nurtured a passion for art from an early age. In imitation of his older brother, he could be found drawing most everywhere he went. He fondly remembers his Mom once telling him not to draw during church.
When he was about seven years old, he and his parents met with a nationally known artist who lived nearby, hoping to receive encouragement for his talent. To their disappointment, this man looked at several drawings and informed Rick that he had no artistic ability and should never consider art as a career. Rick refused to allow his dreams of becoming a well-known, successful artist to be dampened, and persisted in his pursuit of excellence in art. In an interesting end to this tale, years later this same artist judged an art show at the university that Rick was attending, and awarded Rick first place on one of his paintings.
Rick began preparing for his career at a state junior college and then continued his education at Delta State University in Cleveland, MS, where he earned an undergraduate art degree and a Master of Arts Education degree. He began his twenty-five year teaching career in 1970, while simultaneously working as a professional artist. Over the course of his career in the Mississippi public educational system, Rick has taught art at every level from elementary school through university classes. Rick was also an adjunct art instructor at Mississippi College.
Rick received his first art award at the GumTree Festival in Tupelo, MS in 1975. Since then, he has received over 150 awards in local, regional, and national art competitions. Today his work can be found in both private and corporate collections.
In recent years, Rick’s artistic talent has found a new outlet in the illustration of children's books. The first of nine books was published in 2003 by Sleeping Bear Press. He is currently working on his tenth children’s book which he is both writing and illustrating.
Rick’s motivation to create his art is self-induced, and his passion to paint is endless. Instilling a love of art in Mississippi’s school children continues to be a passion for Rick. He visits multiple schools not only in Mississippi, but throughout the US connecting children with art.
Rick plans to continue to paint and exhibit his work wherever the opportunities arise, whether it be art galleries, indoor and outdoor art festivals, or in private showings at his home. He recently opened an art show in a gallery in his home town, and has several art festivals lined up for this coming Spring.