American impressionist Richard Wallich has spent more than 30 years honing his painting talents. Using dabs and swirls of paint, he creates a dazzling array of brightly colored images-ranting from landscapes to figures to sports.

Wallich was attracted to impressionism by desire to paint quickly and spontaneously, to immerse himself in the painting. It's a first impression, fast quick, loose, spontaneous-nondescript perhaps, but clearly a figure.

The Colorado artist also is noted for his use of vibrant, emotion evoking colors. "The element of color influence the mood, feeling and setting." A tree is not just green and brown; there are purples, light blues, pinks, reds and so on.

By the time the Chicago native was 9 years old, he knew he wanted to become a painter. He studied art in high school and at Eastern Illinois University. From there, he went to the American Academy of Art in Chicago and studied figure drawing.

He first dabbled in realism, but found the style too time consuming-taking up to several weeks to complete a painting. He started using a palette knife and adopted a looser, impressionistic approach, which he has refined and enhanced over the years.

After college he went to work as a graphic designer, but never gave up the dream of becoming a painter. He moved to Rhode Island, where his father-in-law sold some of his paintings, and he took part in several large art fairs. His next stop was San Diego, and while working as a commercial artist, he also did many commissions.

In 1987, he moved to Colorado working as a designer. 1989 things started looking very bright. He was commissioned by the National Football League to paint for the Super Bowl. That let to more commissions from the Kentucky Derby, Major League Baseball and resorts across the country.

He appeared live painting on the cable shopping network QVC in 1993 and 94 selling lithographs and apparel with his Super Bowl designs. In 1995, he was commissioned by Major League Baseball's All Star Game Fan Fest in Arlington, Texas.

In 1996, Richard was the official artist for the Summer Olympics in Atlanta. He was commissioned by Sara Lee (Hanes) to paint 14 designs that were reproduced on canvas and clothing. Being there for three weeks signing prints, Giclee's and clothing in Centennial Park was truly a high light of his painting career.

He has been commissioned by M&M Mars, American Airlines, Stanley Tools, Tavern on the Green Restaurant in New York, Kodak, Coca Cola, New York - New York Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, MSNBC, Turner Broadcasting, Zippo Lighters, NBC, John Elway Honda, and the Paris Hilton among others.

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