James Hempel

James Hempel


James Hempel

Artist Statement:

My artwork is inspired by everyday beauty. I seek to capture the evocative quality of light as it plays across the landscape throughout the daily rhythms and broad span of the seasons.

James W. Hempel is an artist whose richly layered canvases are inspired by the subtle dramas of light, color and air evoked within the changing seasons. Plein air paintings and sketchbook drawings created during his travels around the country stand alone as finished works, or may serve as studies for larger studio paintings. James is also an accomplished portrait artist working with both national and international clients. Recently he has received recognition for his work from one of the country’s foremost portrait painters, Everett Raymond Kinstler, and has completed a master class in portraiture with nationally known artist Michael Shane Neal. In addition to oil painting, he works in a variety of media, including conte, pastel, silverpoint, pencil, watercolor and charcoal.

Born and raised in Appleton, Wisconsin, James graduated with honors in the natural sciences and fine arts from Lawrence University. Following three years as a secondary school educator in science and mathematics, he returned full time to the pursuit of his artistic education, completing a classical program of academic life drawing and painting at the Atelier Prohl in Milwaukee. He regularly enjoys alla prima painting sessions with friend and noted artist, Dan Gerhartz. James currently lives in Shorewood, Wisconsin and maintains a studio, gallery, and school of fine arts in Milwaukee within the historic Walker’s Point neighborhood. He teaches workshops and classes in portraiture, plein air painting, landscape, still life and figurative work in a variety of media.

James is a member of the Oil Painters of America, and has had work exhibited and awarded at numerous national and regional OPA shows. He has participated in several juried, small group and solo museum shows, and has won many awards for his landscape, figurative, and portrait work. He travels often to participate in national plein air invitational painting events around the country. His paintings, drawings, and portrait commissions are found in many private and corporate collections.

  • Watercolor 100%
  • Conte 100%
  • Pastels 100%
  • Silverpoint 100%
  • Pencil 100%
  • Charcoal 100%