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James Bama

 

BIOGRAPHY:

Born in Manhattan in 1926, James Bama was a dedicated artist even as a young child, when he used to copy the Flash Gordon comic strip. He experienced his first professional sale when he was only 15, with a drawing of Yankee Stadium that was published in the New York Journal-American. Already on the right path, Bama graduated from New York's High School of Music and Art and entered the Army Air Corps, working as a mechanic, mural painter, and physical training instructor.

Once back home, Bama attended the illustrious Art Students League, studying Anatomy and of course, Drawing. He spent several decades building a very successful career as an illustrator and commercial artist, creating movie posters, book covers, and myriad projects for the Argosy, The Saturday Evening Post and Reader's Digest, etc. His numerous clients have included the New York Giants football team, the Baseball and Football Halls of Fame and the U.S. Air Force to name just a few.

In 1964, the New York artist traveled to Wyoming with his wife to visit their friends - this, of course, inspired Bama so much, he returned there often and began his inspired Western art. The Bamas moved to Wyoming permanently in 1967. By 1971, he was working with a New York art gallery and met with enormous success. Bama's Western art has been characterized as photo-realistic, and he sometimes takes advantage of his medium to use lighting techniques—such as butterfly lighting—that would not be practical in a photograph taken under ambient light.

Bama was inducted into the Illustrator’s Hall of Fame on June 28, 2000, and became the first Honored Artist at the Buffalo Bill Art Show in 2003 held at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Wyoming.
 
 
 
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