It’s Walton’s life, it’s his passion. And it has been so for
over 40 years.
Walton, a Toledo native who attended Scott High School,
started painting in 1966 when he won a contest and took a
correspondence course. After that he was hooked, says the
Vietnam veteran who joined Jeep in the late 1970’s and
remained in factory work there until his retirement in 2001.
Walton developed a procedure, and a following amongst his
fellow employees at Jeep, by transferring photographs to oil
canvases. He estimates that he painted over 100 portraits
during his 25-year Jeep career. He would simply take home
the photographs that he was presented by his colleagues and
acquaintances and start to paint.
This kept him fairly busy, he recalls, but it also limited
his ability to reach for a broader audience. “I didn’t have
time to sell myself,” says Walton. And as any successful
artist will freely admit, an artist must have the ability to
pay attention to the business side of the art business.
“Most of the time when an art exhibit was going on, it was
over before I knew about it,” he says. That was then.
Times have changed over the last year for Walton. He has
been featured in a number of shows and galleries – such as
The Truth Gallery. And his range has expanded as he has
devoted even more time to his art.
Walton painted a portrait of a young Mike Tyson, for
example. The Tyson portrait, a large 30” by 40” canvass, was
inspired by Walton’s love of boxing (“one of my favorite
sports”) and his admiration for the Tyson of an earlier day
– the Tyson of pre-caricature days.
Walton also ventured into street scenes and still life to
satisfy his own artistic curiosities. Now, there are few
subjects that he does not undertake. From portraits, to
landscapes, to animal scenes, Walton has his hand, and his
oils, in a wide range of subject matter.