Simon Winegar is best known for his vibrant, realistic landscapes. Born and raised in Davis County, Winegar originally pursued a degree in Geology and Spanish. He worked in a hardware store through college, painting in oils on the side.
“I always knew I wanted to be an artist. I just didn’t know you could do it as a real job,” Winegar said. “When my brother, Seth, who is also a painter, started making money at it, I realized it was possible.”
Winegar set a goal for himself with a deadline of becoming a viable artist in a year’s time. He threw his oil paintings into the proverbial artist ring in 2000, and has been earning a living doing what he loves ever since. Currently Winegar has paintings in five galleries from Utah to New Mexico, and a large painting can fetch a price of up to $15,000.
Winegar likes to work with atonalistic and impressionist qualities when creating his pieces. He works in layers and plays with the surface of the paint. His process is labor intensive because it does involve working with several layers, which also requires allowing the painting to dry in between.
“I do a lot of on-site studies, like pleinair on location, that gives me the information that I want and need to bring back to the studio in Farmington, and use it in order to create my final pieces.”
During the past year, Winegar has been painting agricultural pieces, mostly large barns and farms. In addition, he enjoys painting anything old, such as cars, trains and tractors. He is also venturing into the street themes. Winegar strives to be a better figure artist. He is also interested in sculpting with raw materials, like marble and rock, perhaps recalling his educational background in Geology.
“The most challenging aspect of my job is not just me painting, but being an artist is a business,” Winegar said. “No artist wants to run the business side of it. All the other stuff that is required makes you end up wearing many different hats.”
Winegar has done a lot of commission work in the past year as well. He enjoys challenging himself, finding new subjects that inspire him and creating pieces inspired by others.
“It is impossible to master being an artist. That’s like saying you have learned everything about life,” Winegar stated. “I think if you are not continually learning and growing as an artist, you are losing ground, swimming up stream. It gives you something to look forward to. There is always something new.”