Artist

Photo of visual artist Steve Miller from 2012

Yep, I’m Steve Miller, but not that Steve Miller. I'm an independent visual artist, freelance graphic designer, amateur musician, and family man living and working in Royal Oak, Michigan.

Scroll down to check out my blog.

Click here if you want to read my artist's statement.


Portrait of my Aunt Marge

acrylic portrait painting by Steve Miller
8×8″, acrylic on wood panel with 1.5″ profile, completed 11/9/18, © Steve Miller 2018

My Aunt Marjory passed away recently. I made this portrait in memory of her as a gift for my California cousins. I haven’t seen that side of my family in decades, and I look forward to joining them soon, as we celebrate the life of this wonderful, joyful, humorous woman.

This portrait was based on the above photo that I believe was taken by my cousin Lynette. I usually work from my own photos, but since this was a surprise, I worked with this image, found on Facebook, that I feel captures her spirit. In the original photo, she was celebrating 50 years of supporting The League of Women Voters.


The Ice Cream Truck is Coming

image of a painting of two girls and an ice cream truck on a summer day, titled "Allowance", by artist Steve Miller.
12″x16″, acrylic on wood panel, with a depth of 1.5″, completed 11/2/2018, © Steve Miller 2018

I finished this painting of my girls getting ice cream from the ice cream truck over this past summer. It’s based on a snapshot I took.

We allow them to pay for that sort of thing with their allowance, and sometimes the oldest treats her sister using her allowance, because the youngest spent all her money. I think this was the case here. So, I’m calling this painting “Allowance”. Hopefully, it will often remind my youngest that her older sister loves her.

Here’s some details of the progression from my instagram page

Allowance portfolio post.


Zoe

small pet portrait by Steve Miller titled, "Zoe", completed October, 2018
8″x8″, acrylic on wood panel with 1.5″ profile, completed 10/8/18, © Steve Miller 2018

This small pet portrait was made for two dear friends in memory of their beloved little Pomeranian family member named Zoe.


Dress Makers

9″x12″, acrylic on wood panel with 1.5″ profile, completed 10/10/18, © Steve Miller 2018

Boredom leads to creativity. This small painting of my girls was made from a photo I took of them toward the end of summer 2018, after complaining about being bored.

I’ve posted some of the progress shots on my Instagram and Facebook page.

Dress Makers portfolio post


Live Painting Demo

Cruise into Pontiac tonight and tomorrow for a live painting demo.

As a participant in Pontiac’s Art on Wheels Festival, and on the heels of winning first place in Canvas Pontiac’s Art Competition, I will be fabricating a new landscape, painting live and open to the public inside the Alley Cat Cafe, located on the corner of N. Saginaw and W. Lawrence St., in downtown Pontiac, MI.

I will begin the painting Friday night (8/17/18) from 6-9pm, and hopefully complete the work tomorrow (8/18/18) during the busy Dream Cruise afternoon.

During the live art demo, limited edition prints of “Trail Dreams” will be available for $300, credit cards accepted. Also, I have six recent artworks you may enjoy exploring throughout the cafe.

I believe there will be lots of activity with street musicians, multiple artists and craftspeople, and food trucks serving the public, so it should be very interesting to see what that environment inspires in my work. Hope to see you there.
For all of you unable to make the event, I’ll try to post some of the action on my facebook page or instagram Acct. So like or follow me if you haven’t already, to stay in touch, and, Thanks.

Here’s a writeup about the Festival in the Oakland Press.


En Plein Air – Lake Michigan

Last week, I made a painting while visiting Douglas Beach on Lake Michigan with my family and friends.

I had a blast working en plein air, under shade, while everyone else played in the sand and water.

Studying the changing light and reflecting surfaces of the water was mesmerizing, but I had to work quickly laying in compositional and color choices before my acrylics dried or the light changed too drastically.

The finished painting took approximately 2.5 hours on site, and a couple more hours in my studio.

Here is my FB Post about painting  “A Day at Douglas Beach”.

To comment, and stay informed, Like Steve Miller – visual artist  on Facebook. Or, follow me on Instagram at SteveMillerArt

Visit the portfolio entry for “A Day at Douglas Beach”.


Canvas Pontiac – 1st Place

As an independent artist, I am very grateful to have received a first place award from the Canvas Pontiac art competition for my painting Trail Dreams.

The judges responded by saying, "from weaving paths through the forrest, with trees that change in and out of focus, a river that leans diagonally to the left, it's perfectly positioned in the pocket part, and really captures your imagination."

With this recognition, and prize money, I will continue painting large scale imaginary landscapes that give viewers new places to explore and enjoy.

I'm thankful for the opportunity to have this painting seen by so many people through this program. My 8'x10' banner will continue to hang on the side of the building located at 35 N. Saginaw, downtown Pontiac, MI., for a full year.

Thank you for your interest and support.

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Rocky Climb

It’s hot, humid, very bright. Keep moving. Almost to the top. There’s an offshoot with shade. If only these damn horseflies would leave me alone.

This is one narrative I consider when thinking about my latest acrylic landscape painting titled, “Rocky Climb.”

Rocky Climb, like a lot of my paintings, is not based on a real place. It’s a fabricated daydream I explored for fun, through trial and error, and months of pushing paint around.
I enjoy painting imaginary landscapes because it reveals more about me than if I were to paint what’s in front of me. On the surface, Rocky Climb expresses the beauty I find in organic forms, and rugged environments. However, when looking a little deeper, this painting suggests that I have more hill to climb before I feel accomplished or satisfied. Therefore, this painting says a lot about my inability to appreciate where I am at the moment. I guess I should work on that.

Thanks to Larry and Tim at Fine Art Printing in Ferndale for capturing the image, and making my prints, which will be available through my Studio Shop soon.

To see progress shots and details of my painting process, follow me on instagram @SteveMillerArt.

See Portfolio Page of Rocky Climb.


Trail Painting Progress Gif

Just finished this big trail painting today.

I took several pictures, so I could make this little animated gif and look back at the work in progress.

Trail Dreams, 60 x 40, acrylic on canvas, © Steve Miller 2017

This painting was inspired by mountain biking in SE Michigan, but is not an actual place. It’s just a daydream built on good memories of getting out there and contending with the trail. Feeling the exhilaration of moving through the trees, and finding all these great things to look at, if only for a moment.


Painting The Trails

Small landscape painting of a wooded trail.
8 x 8, acrylic on canvas, 11/28/17

Just completed these two imaginary trail paintings, part of a new series inspired by mountain biking in Michigan.

Painting imaginary trails is just as fun as riding real ones.

Small landscape painting of a dirt trail.
8 x 8, acrylic on canvas, 11/28/17


Portraits of my girls

Painted these portraits of my little ladies the other day. Magenta highlights and smiles.

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