Artist Detail

John Peaspanen

Type of Work: Pastels, acrylics, inks, charcoal, colored pencils, graphite, natural materials, leather, glass bead

Contact Information





My name is John Peaspanen. I guess I am what one would call “contrary.” I don’t tend to listen to opinions or follow instructions very well. My parents told me that “you cannot make a living as an artist.” My college professors told me that I had to conform and create things as they did. Well, lack of family support and failing grades did not dissuade me from doing my own thing.

I've never been one to settle into one particular style or medium. As such, acrylics, pastels, inks, graphite, charcoal, watercolors and colored pencils have all been utilized to create figurative studies, wildlife illustrations and pieces that refuse to be easily defined. Mostly self-taught, I make art that inspires me and makes me happy. Fortunately, people have seemed to like it, too. That’s good, as I would not have enough wall space to keep it all.

New to Winston-Salem, I’ve been a jack-of-all-trades nomad, moving more than two dozen times over the last three decades. I’ve lived in Ohio, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas and North Carolina. Included among the vocations that have paid the bills are journalist, tattoo artist, bartender, and florist. I get bored and need new adventures and environments.

My creations are diverse – paintings, molded leather masks, knapped arrowheads, carvings, beadwork, illustrations and Native regalia, whatever I feel driven to make. However, my primary passion is the female form. Ever since my first life drawing class in college, I have loved creating portraits and female figurative pieces. To me, there is nothing more classically beautiful than a tasteful nude. The play of light on the curves, contours and textures offers a great challenge. And every woman, regardless of race, size or age, has a unique beauty that should be celebrated.

I have been influenced by many sources, cultures and artists over the years. I always appreciated the Japanese woodblock prints, which led me to the art of Patrick Nagel and Dennis Mukai in the '80s and '90s. Degas, Mucha, Klimt, da Vinci, Renoir, van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec, Modigliani and others have been studied and have certainly added to my current styles of painting and drawing.

To see the full range of my creations, check out my Web site. Feel free to contact me to discuss potential commissioned work or to inquire about purchasing pieces displayed.

Other Information

Commission Work
Sells Work
Sells Work at Red Dog Gallery