By Jessica Isaacs
Have you been looking for the perfect painting of the mountain countryside to add to your home or collection? Then don’t miss your chance to get work from acclaimed realist painter Jason Drake in the “Seasons of Beauty” show on display now through Aug. 28 at Blowing Rock Frameworks and Gallery.
“Jason is probably the most incredible realism painter that the High Country has ever had,” said Tim Miller, gallery owner and dealer at BRFG, who has represented Drake for three years now. “His work is totally compared to Andrew Wyeth and even John Singer Sargent.
“He captures the true essence of the landscape that he paints — the trees, the flowers, the sky, the grass, the water, the structures. He’s a down to Earth, very technical, precise painter.”
In the gallery’s first year representing Drake, every single one of his pieces sold. In the second year, all of his landscapes sold and even some of his portraits.
Now in the third year working with the artist, BRFG opened his show “Seasons of Beauty” on Monday and has sold 10 pieces in just four days.
“He has a huge following, and I think a lot of people really relate to his work because it touches the heart. It really does,” Miller said. “It seems like a simple thing to do, but to have paint on a brush and put it on a canvas or board the way he does, it creates a really incredible mood. Drake’s paintings are a brand.
“When you see his paintings, it’s obvious that he has his own style. I think that’s what attracts a lot of people to his work and that’s one reason we’ve sold a lot of his paintings.”
A reception for Drake was hosted at the gallery on Saturday, Aug. 15, where visitors got to meet this incredible artist, hear his unique story and see his phenomenal work.
“I’m standing in the gallery looking at all of the pieces right now. They are really popular,” Miller said. “A lot of painters try to paint realism and it looks okay, but his almost have a 3D effect. We’ve sold a lot just in this first week and some people have thought they were photographs. You have to look very closely to see the brushstrokes.”
The story behind the artist is just as interesting as what he creates on canvas, and you’ll get to know the man behind the paintings if you make it to the reception.
A native of Beaufort, South Carolina, Drake boasts a degree in aerospace engineering from Perdue University. He’s only been working full-time as an artist for the past year, and had before that built a successful career as a computer programmer and building helicopters for the Marine Corps. in San Diego, California.
“He designed helicopters. He’s obviously a smart man,” Miller said. “It’s like a surgeon. When you’re operating on someone, you can’t make a mistake. He’s a perfectionist, and I think that’s why his paintings look so real.”
“In my 21 ½ years of being an art gallery owner and art dealer, he is the purist realist artist that I’ve ever represented,” Miller said. “He’s the purest realism artist that I’ve seen in the state of North Carolina, in galleries or in museums, period.”
Blowing Rock Frameworks and Gallery is located at 7539 Valley Blvd. next to Food Lion in Blowing Rock. Call 828-295-0041 or visit www.blowingrockgalleries.com for more information.