We had the good fortune of connecting with Bill Cramer and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Bill, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Well, I’m not sure if it was a thought process or more of an evolution of skills and events in my life that led to me becoming a full time artist. Our first daughter was born with a brittle bone condition and she required a lot of care. I became a stay at home dad while working very part-time at a local picture framing shop where I used to work full-time. As this was taking place, I began working on my art as a landscape oil painter. After a few years our daughter become more stable and able to go to school. And about this time the frame shop went out of business. So, I started applying and getting into art shows and working at it full time. Always knew I’d be an artist, I guesss the timing had to be right. I’ve been working at for about 17 years now.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m a professional landscape oil painter living in Central, Arizona. I love to paint outdoors on location and in the studio. I’ve been most recognized for my paintings of the canyons and red rock country of the American Southwest, especially Grand Canyon National Park. Much of my love and enjoyment of landscape imagery stems from my adventures as a rock climber, hiker and explorer – doing what we like to call “Land Snorkelling”! Finding and exploring new locations continues to be the biggest motivator and what I get most excited about. The biggest lesson I learned along the way is to not let expectations of things (getting into shows, getting awards, making sales, etc.) get in the way of doing and enjoying the work. I just do the work and let the rest happen – or not.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Around Prescott, we usually recommend visitors go to these restaurants – El Gato Azul, The Liqour Deli, Raven Cafe, and Prescott Brewery. The historic Hassayampa Hotel has an amazing interior. The bar and restaurant there are good too. There’s plenty of live misic and bars downtown on Whiskey Row. There’s good anitique hunting on Cortez Street and plenty of art galleries around the downtown square. For the areas history, visit Sharlot Hall Museum. If you like western art, check out the Phippen Museum. The Prescott National Forest has lots of outdoor opportunities. Lynx and Goldwater Lakes are nice. The scenic hiking around Watson Lake in the Granite Dells should not be missed. The Highlands Center for Natural History is good place to start for understanding the natural areas around Prescott. There’s also a ton of rock climbing and mountain biking in the area. Visit the Hike Shack for that stuff. Jerome and Sedona are easy and worthwhile day trips from Prescott.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My family, close art friends, art collectors and gallery folks. Without their encouragement and support this whole art gig would be nearly impossible.