James McGrew

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, James McGrew grew up making frequent backpacking trips to Yosemite, Tahoe and other beautiful locations in Northern California and Oregon. He fell in love with Yosemite at an early age and often tried to capture the natural beauty through various artistic media including pastels at the age of 8 and using his father’s oils by age 10.

Although he took every art class available up to and throughout college, in effort to learn more about his favorite place and artistic subject, he earned degrees in Biology, Chemistry and Geology then went on to study Environmental Education in Graduate School. James relies on his background in science with art as a vehicle to communicate the natural beauty that inspires his work.

James hikes/backpacks several hundred miles each summer, always with a tripod, pochade and cameras. He uses his plein air paintings as references for larger studio works. James has worked as an interpretive naturalist in Yosemite for over 15 summer seasons.

James’ paintings hang in collections around the world and have been shown in numerous solo shows, national and international exhibitions and plein air invitationals, receiving many awards. He is an artist member of the California Art Club and a signature member of both the American Impressionist Society and the Laguna Plein Air Painters Association.   His work has been featured in many national publications and has been in several films. He loves backpacking with his family.

James’ website is jamesmcgrewfineart.com.

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View this artist's archived work

Bridalveil Sunset

Oil on panel, 14″ x 11″. Painting only: $1,650.
Framed in a Compound No. 2 + Sub No. 22—2 3/4″ in quartersawn white oak with Medieval stain. 23kt gilt slip. (Inquire for other frame options.)
Painting framed as shown: $2,200.

Pohono-Summer Day

Oil on panel, 12 x 9 inches. Painting only: $1,200.
Framed in a No. 26 CV—2 1/4 with 23kt gilt sight edge. Quartersawn white oak with Dark Weathered stain. (Inquire for other frame options.)
Painting framed as shown: $1,550.

Half Dome, Spring Morning Clouds

Oil on panel, 9″ x 12″.  Painting only: $1,200.