A. Leon Miler Biography
As for the art I do, I guess I am just a design guy. The 1 st medium I became proficient in was watercolors. I started watercolors when I was a teenager after a very short career in spray paint that cost me more to clean up than it was worth. I paint mostly transparent watercolors, and occasionally drybrush. I learned oil painting from master painting restorationist & artist Bill Yelland in Tustin, CA. I was able to examine up close many paintings by several old masters from the Vatican, the Hermitage, in St. Petersburg, and various other museums across the U.S. and Europe. Mr. Yelland showed me the art techniques used by the artists as he restored the paintings. My oil painting style is derived from what I learned from Bill Yelland. I usually paint everything monochrome, and build up transparent layers of color over that. In most of my paintings, I use a limited color palette.
My third medium, pen and ink, I have a special love for. The starkness of the black on white, and the endless texture fascinates me. I do occasional pastels, pencil, calligraphy, colored pencils, and wood carving as well. I study and research a lot – ancient art, cave art, modern art, impressionism, whatever. Being a design guy, I appreciate art deco, art noveau, craftsman and mission style, etc. Art that is an end in itself is an end to art.
Art and the artist are both better when they are forced to live up to something greater than both the art and the artist. Art at best is a pale reflection of things greater and beyond me. There are universal truths to be found in the complexities of the smallest creatures. A wind scorpion is the master of its world, and yet will die with the 1st frost in the fall. When I was young, I found tall trees in fields of grass. I have been to the ocean and been swept off my feet. I have been to the top of mountains where the air is cold and thin; looked across the top of the world and realized how inconsequential I am. There are diamonds in snowflakes, rarer than the rarest diamond. They last a brief moment and disappear before our breath. There are harmonic patterns in wind-rippled water, in blown sand, & in cirrus clouds arriving before a storm. The patterns in a rattlesnake’s scales are much the same as in the center of a sunflower.
See also www.aleonmiler.com
I grew up mostly in the Pacific Northwest, moving to Arlington Texas as a teenager. In 1998 my wife & I moved to the City of Socorro, New Mexico from the Pacific Northwest where we built an adobe home above the Rio Grande valley at the base of one of New Mexico’s many mountains.
Along with the 3 Cranes Gallery we manage a gallery for Socorro County Arts, a local art group, called Alamo gallery & Gifts located in Socorro, where I also exhibit. The name ‘Alamo’ comes from the Alamo band of the Navajo Nation with whom we collaborate.