At the age of 21, upon seeing nineteenth century French landscape paintings, Jim McVicker had an awakening to art. The beauty and sensitivity he saw in those works changed his perception of the world. Influenced by the French Impressionists, particularly Monet, Pissarro and Sisley, he created his first plein air painting in 1975, and enrolled in life drawing and painting classes at Chaffey Community College in Southern California. In 1975, at age 24, he decided to become a full-time painter.
He moved from Ontario, California, where he was raised, to the northern part of the state. After a year, he settled in Humboldt County, drawn there by the beauty and the art community. He met and worked with several accomplished artists, painting landscapes every day on location, or painting in the studio always working directly from the still-life set up or models. Jim learned from direct observation of nature, by looking at and studying great art from the past, and working alongside artists more developed than himself.
In 1984, he met his wife and fellow artist, Terry, and they live a wonderful, quiet life in California. They have studios on their property and Jim paints daily, following his passion for painting from life, trying to capture the light, atmosphere, space, and the mysterious beauty all around us.
2021 Third Place, Still Life and Plein Air Categories, two Honorable Mentions Plein Air, Art Renewal Center Salon Competition
2019 22nd Annual Laguna Beach Plein Air Painting Invitational
$2,500 Jean Stern Distinctive Merit Legacy Award, $1,000 Spirit of Laguna Award, $1,000 The Irvine Museum Award
2019-20 Art Renewal Center Salon Competition Honorable Mention Plein Air category
2018 Artist Choice Award Maui Plein Air Invitational
2017 1st place in the plein air category of the Art Renewal Center International Salon Competition, two honorable mentions: plein air category and an honorable mention in the still life category.
2017 Best Composition, Best West Coast Artist, Best New Artist to Easton, Easton Plein Air Festival, Easton Maryland, July, 2017
2016 Best in Show, Laguna Beach 18th Plein Air Invitational
2016 Finalist, Art Renewal Center International Salon Competition
2015 First Place, Plein Air Magazine Salon Competition $15,000 award. Cover story, Sept 2015 issue
2015 Gold Medal for Best Painting, 104th Gold Medal Exhibition, California Art Club
2015 Finalist, Art Renewal Center International Salon Competition
2014 Best in Show, Laguna Beach 16th Plein Air Invitational
2014 2nd Place, Plein Air Magazine Salon Competition
2014 Franz Bischoff Award for Best Still Life, 103rd Gold Medal Exhibition, California Art Club
2014 Southwest Art Magazine Award of Excellence, 103rd Gold Medal Exhibition, California Art Club
2014 Finalist, Art Renewal Center International Salon Competition
2013 3rd Place, Plein Air Magazine Salon Competition