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Missouri Native - Doug Hall - Award Winning Painter

Updated on September 3, 2016
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I have had a long standing interest in the Paiute Indians and Native Americans in general. I love reading about them.

The Ambush by Doug Hall

The Ambush
The Ambush | Source

Award winning painter Doug Hall

Snuggled in the hillside overlooking the lush green valley of Huckleberry Forest Park is a rustic cabin/studio where the award winning painter Doug Hall spends some of his days lost among the Woodland Native Americans. Mr. Hall and friends spent months building this quaint cabin. He spent quite a few years “roughing it.” Mr. Hall slept in a tent while his barn was being built. After the barn was built he lived in the barn until the cabin was built. He has spent quality time, energy and thought into making the cabin very efficient, thus keeping the cost of living to a minimum. On the inside wall is etched the date February 16, 2011, which is when he completed chinking the cabin. On the porch, just outside the door is the date July 12, 2011 when the cabin was completed. His cabin is filled with wonderful treasures like a butcher cutting block, a wash stand and claw foot tub. You can tell that he has a love for nature in his paintings and by his choice of housing. He enjoys the beautiful scenery of this countryside including the red birds and blue jays which he feeds out of iron skillets on his porch overlooking the valley. He has friendly grey cat that keeps him company and keeps the mice away.

Dobbins

Dobbins the movie star
Dobbins the movie star | Source

Dobbins the movie star

Until recently he had a strawberry roan horse named “Dobbins” Their friendship began when Mr. Hall was in his early twenties and Dobbins was two years old. They had three wonderful decades together. Dobbins passed away this winter. Mr. Hall reminisced about the day when his friend Mr. Glen Scott of Purdy took him to see Dobbins for the first time. He saw this young, thin horse standing off in the distance and commented to a friend that “he sure hoped that wasn’t the horse they were talking about.” He recalled Mr. Scott’s advice that “You can’t ride color.” Mr. Hall and Dobbins were in two movies together; the 1997 The Postman and the 1999 Ride with the Devil. Mr. Hall and Dobbins both sporting long dark hair. Mr. Hall laughed as he said, “It takes $75.00 of Clairol Hair Color and a myriad of colors before you get a black horse.” He never regretted getting that thin, leggy horse. The day of my visit there were two geldings visiting hoping to catch Mr. Hall’s eye. There is also a beautiful ten year old horse called “Black and White” which shares his lovely mountainside and she gets lonely when he is away.

Warm smile and ready laugh

Mr. Hall is a friendly, animated story teller. Many of his memories are attached to a humorous story. He likes to laugh and animates his stories with his hands. He has a ready smile, a warm handshake and a welcoming spirit.

Portraits soon in museums

The morning of my visit Mr. Hall had been painting a portrait of a Native American male on a 9” x12” canvas for the Brinton Museum in Big Horn, Wyoming and a 30” x 40” canvas painting called The Ambush for the Buffalo Bill Museum in Wyoming. I was fascinated with the delicate touches and finite details in the paint on the faces and the wildflowers.

Cabin over looking the valley

Cabin that holds his studio
Cabin that holds his studio | Source

Doug Hall's studio

His studio occupies the upper lever of the southwest corner of a cozy cabin. There is a large glass window to the south overlooking a plush valley. His easel faces the center of the room and his brushes are sitting in the windowsill. To the right of the easel is stool holding his paints. There is a chair facing the easel. He says he may stand for a couple of hours and then sit for a while he is painting. On a table to the left of the easel is a table that holds the photos and a folder of notes that he uses to add the details to his paintings. The north side of the cabin holds a few larger canvas’ standing along the wall. To the east hangs one of his favorite pictures above the vintage settee. It is a single Native American partially standing behind a tree. It appears to be dusk when this glimpse takes places. Another of his favorite pictures is one he uses on his business cards called One step at a time. He said this was one of his favorites because the Native American is precariously walking at a brisk pace along a log carrying his rifle and bed roll. He said that it “reminded of the things he does while balancing art and life.” The model for this picture was a Coca Cola driver in Illinois at the time this picture was made.

Native American women

I mentioned that some his pictures were darker than others. He said, “he had repeatedly been asked to lighten up his pictures.” That equated to less trees and a lighter choice of colors. When asked if he ever painted female Native Americans, he replied “I have been asked that question before. I have painted females, but they did not sell.” He elaborated on this statement by saying the females he painted were doing things like laundry and carrying water.

Charlie Russell Auction

Mr. Hall was expressing how privileged he felt to be invited to participate in things like the Charlie Russell Auction where the picture, lot #183 called “The Painted Tree” was set to auction as $16,000 to $18,000 and sold with a final bid of $27,500.

Just keep the electricity on

After losing his business on Easter 2001 in a tornado, he had to start from scratch. He wanted to spend more time painting. This was a big step for him. He had to return to basics. “I decided that paying my electricity was my line in the sand. If I could just make enough to keep the electricity on I would try to make a living selling my paintings.” Fourteen years later he has electricity.

The Gallery

The Gallery and Black Powder shooting range
The Gallery and Black Powder shooting range | Source

The Wicker Knotcher Crew

In 2013, Mr. Hall and “The Wicker Knotcher Crew,” The word “Knotcher” was made up by the crew. The crew consists of friends Randy Wilson, Ron Barkley, Larry Dixon, and Michael Dees, began another cabin on the sight of the prior business on Highway 59 just south of Neosho. The cabin has on the inside wall the completion date of March 28, 2015. Stop by and ask Mr. Hall to tell you about some of their exploits while building. The former hunting store is soon to open as an Art Gallery slash hunting store. Every Sunday afternoon around 3:00 p.m. a group gathers to do some black powder shooting.

Hall Awards

Mr. Hall has won several awards for his work. The work that got him recognized was Looking Glass which won him the 2002 George Phippen Fine Arts Award in Prescott, Arizona. This picture was quite large. He and his brother had been asked to bring it to the stage. The George Phippen Award was the last one given out. This being Mr. Hall’s first award program did not know the ropes. Mr. Hall said he went from frustrated to elated all in one breath when he realized he had won the award. Since that day Mr. Hall has added awards; 2003 First Place in oils in Sedona, Arizona, 2004 Artist’s Choice and H. E. Williams Award and 2005 Best of Show, Stillwater, Oklahoma.

Doug Hall Art

You can view and buy some of Doug Hall’s paintings at:
www.somersetfineart.com and www.doughall.art.
Or contact him at e-mail sales@doughallart.com. Or just drop by the Art Gallery on a Sunday afternoon around 3:00 p.m.

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