Journey into yesteryear to nostalgic America, and sample everyday life from the good ol’ days through the talents of gifted artist, Les Ray. Les seeks to pay tribute to the humble, hard working men and women who pioneered this great land. He documents their faces and surroundings; always finding the humor in everyday situations. Though many subjects come from his own memories, others are carefully researched for accuracy. Observe how they spring to life again on canvas!
Les’ most recent achievement has been depicting the excitement of turn-of-the-century celebrations. “Spectacle Paintings” as he refers to them, are the most difficult; requiring more research to get the smallest details correct, and more time in painting the entire panorama. The result is being able to experience a moment of high drama from another era, stopped in time, for each of us to step into, and to enjoy.
With all of his God-given gifts and artistic genius, Les continued to work for the City of Thousand Oaks for very many years, in order to support his family. Is it no wonder, Les can relate and paint stories of the humble Americans whom made this country great?
Only since his retirement, has he begun painting on a full time scale. Les was married for forty-six years, until his wife passed away in 1999. Since his new marriage, he moved to Pine Mountain, (part of Frazier Park) California, for the next 5 years.
Les and Joy then decided to take to the open road and see the entire USA by motor coach. Les continued to paint along the stayovers, and produced two spectacular paintings; one entitled; “A Day at Morro Bay” (California) as well as a very popular painting he calls, “The Ghosts of Tombstone” (Tombstone, AZ); both of which are collages.
After seeing only five states; the last of which was Oregon, both Les and Joy just fell in love with the peacefulness and way of life and decided to sell their home in Thousand Oaks, CA and move to Salem, Oregon; where he now will spend all his free time to his great love of painting.
Whatever subject matter Les paints, there is always present, the warmth and humor that Les Ray, the man, and the artist sees in his fellowman. This same basic humaneness is prominent in every aspect of his life, and undoubtedly provides that special appeal, each of his paintings offer us.