Dan Budde grew up in Clinton, Iowa and still calls it home. He painted his first piece of artwork at age 11 after receiving oil paints as a present. “I remember loving the smell of oil paint as a child; I still do love that smell,” he said.
Dan continued painting throughout school. “I read everything I could on my craft, and my technique grew more advanced,” he said. But after college, he needed to make a living doing what he loved. “I decided to knock on doors and picked the most beautiful house. A woman was outside in her garden, and I showed her my artwork and offered to make a painting of her house. She placed an order, and I entered commission painting heaven right there and then.”
Over the next 30 years, Dan painted homes, buildings, farms and even the people who lived there. “I had a voracious appetite for painting,” he said. Dan Budde’s work has been shown in local galleries, and a 6-week show was held in 2013 featuring non-commissioned paintings of some of his most popular work.
Dan uses Gamblin oils and always mixes to achieve each color. After a sketch in pencil, a semi-detailed underpainting is done, covering the canvas in grays or muted colors. “This allows me to see the idea painted out and establish the values. At this point, light and darks are established.” The piece is then painted in layers, and detail is put in place one layer at a time until the painting is completed. Then a layer of varnish is applied. Dan explains his process this way: “I add detail upon detail, and it seems like a painting will go on forever. But then suddenly I come to the point where I know it is complete. Somehow I just know.”
Dan Budde goes to bed early each night and awakens at 3:00 a.m. to paint in his studio until the sun comes up and beyond. He says it is all about the solitude and that he loves to paint when everything is quiet, and he can be alone with his thoughts, his paints and his canvas. Dan cares a great deal about the reaction to his work. “I want my art to always be a surprise, and I want the viewers to feel joy and draw interpretations and conclusions from their own personal world.”
Now that his life revolves a great deal around Quote Paintings, Dan could not be happier with the opportunity. “JJ Mae and I are totally in tune with each other. If I could dream up the perfect scenario or arrive at painting utopia, this would be it. The creative concept of Quote Paintings is a perfect fit for me!”
JJ Mae lives in Northern California with her cat, her flower garden and a large shoebox full of written quotes. She is a self-admitted recluse, but her family prefers the word “homebody.”
JJ has been writing for years, including a book officially copyrighted but unpublished titled, “This is What I Think About This and That.” She has her own unique style, often using homophonic words in repetition to create humor. When the family discovered the box with her treasure trove of writings, the journey began to share them with the world (see “The Story of Quote Paintings”).
Considering herself to be both “metaphysical and spiritual,” JJ says she writes whenever she receives a strong message to create. “I keep a pen and paper by my bed because inspiration seems to often strike in the morning as soon as I wake up. Sometimes I write so much that I have to have my morning cup of tea in the afternoon.” When asked to contribute a “bio” for this part of the website, JJ Mae wrote the endearing poem found on this page. It speaks for itself!