Bailey Burton was born and raised in Lansing, Michigan. Growing up, she was the young artist in the family. Bailey was always drawing and experimenting with paint as her most beloved hobby. She decided to pursue another passion of hers and completed her bachelor’s degree in Fisheries and Wildlife from Michigan State University. After college, she and her husband moved to Great Falls, Montana. In her new hometown, she was struck with inspiration her first time attending Western Art week in March of 2021. It was then she decided to pursue art. She was able to combine her passion for wildlife and painting by becoming a wildlife artist. Bailey is a self-taught artist and her medium of choice is oil paint. She participated in her first art show, the Legends West Art Show in August of 2021. She was then invited back to participate in Western Art week in March of 2022, the very show that led her to her career as an artist.
My paintings are meant to reflect on the unique beauty of wildlife. I am partial to realism because the intricate patterns and unique features of each animal captivates me. I want my work to emulate my appreciation for wildlife as they are. I began my body of work in acrylic paints. More recently, I have found myself at home with oil paint. With permission from professional wildlife photographers, I work from a reference photograph. During the painting process, I face the challenges of attention to detail, accurate color rendition, lighting and depth. I work in a series of layers and glazes working from dark to light often taking weeks to finish one piece. My work has both fine art and contemporary elements. My portraits create a recognizable theme of simplicity achieved by a dark black background. The black coats the portrait with a dramatic effect forcing the attention upon the subject and the small details within it. The goal is to allow zero distractions from interrupting the admiration of the subject I’ve painted. I have found that being self-taught means each painting comes with many lessons and a deeper understanding of the techniques used to achieve each piece. I have hopes that someday my work will contribute to a range of conservation efforts giving my work purpose towards something I deeply care about.