Trips to art museums and art classes in college laid the foundation for Peters’ interest in what was to become his passion and career. In college, he began painting seriously; a professor, who was also a successful commercial illustrator, acknowledged and fostered Peters’ talent and potential. With a desire for a career in commercial art, the artist was fortunate to have a mentor who educated him in the various components of the business. The young Peters soon began making a living working with well known advertising and publishing companies in New York without having to live there. Peters thrived in the business and his work was in demand. During this time, he joined the Society of Illustrators.
During his successful commercial art career, Peters and his wife moved to Colorado and lived on a ranch where they bred and raised show horses. This rewarding life brought new purpose to his talent as an artist. He began painting the horses they loved and the western landscape. Peters felt compelled to paint full-time and quit commercial art, and his fine art career as a landscape painter was brought to life.
Now settled back in Arizona with his family, Peters paints in a spacious studio next to his home. Majestic mountain vistas and his own horse pasture contribute to his many inspired moments at the easel. The artist also ventures into the natural world he so loved as a boy to view, contemplate, make notes, and sketch an image that he will take back to his studio where it will come alive on his canvas. Adds Peters, “If something is in one of my paintings, I’ve been there and experienced it.”
Robert Peters has spent his life living in and absorbing all that the West and its magnificent landscapes offer. The artist states, “My work is grounded in my earliest personal impressions.” As a child, Peters grew up in Arizona, and he remembers fondly family trips that allowed him to hike, fish, and hunt in the wild and wondrous landscapes of southwestern Colorado. In these early years, the artist was just happy to enjoy the experience of being outdoors and eager to take in all that nature offers.
“I often seek out the story in a landscape,” says Peters. He notes that “the repetition of shape in ridges” and “jagged rocks in juxtaposition with soft snow” are just a couple aspects that interest him in mentally forming a composition that will draw and move the viewer’s eye to take in all of nature captured on his canvas. The artist also notes that “a judicious use of detail” makes up the light and delicate aspects of his works. The excellent ability to orchestrate color and values gives Peters’ art depth and emotion. “That’s where their (my paintings) atmosphere comes from,” adds the artist. “In the studio, I’m composing, rearranging, and reliving.”