Award winning artist David Hettinger began his career when he hopped a plane from the railroad town of Aurora, IL and landed in NYC. He moved to New York on the advice of Joseph Welna, having virtually no worldly wisdom, only a fierce desire to "learn what it was to be a real artist". Welna began showing Hettinger's work while the young artist was still attending the American Academy of Art in Chicago. He directed Hettinger to study with David Leffel and Richard Schmid in New York and on how to earn his living as an artist from day one. ....

Today Hettinger's paintings are in private collections around the globe. He focuses on figurative work drawn from life in his Aurora studio. These works represent a lifetime of observing everyday relationships between people. Relationships and the sweet subtleties shared between human beings is at the core of the man and the artist that Hettinger has become. The fleeting human treasure of those subtle moments between people is apparent....

For David Hettinger, art is about light—the strength of its presence or its absence. Whether the subject is peonies and geraniums in a halo of backlighting, softly rolling farm fields, or a young girl dozing in a wingback chair with a book open in her lap, how light flickers and flows across the surface of a scene is what most intrigues Hettinger. “A subject alone is not enough,” he says from his studio overlooking the Fox River in Aurora, IL.

“As an artist, I love to see the ever-changing effects of light—without that, a painting just doesn’t work. My preference is natural light.... “The seasoned artist knows how to mix colors, use brushes, apply paint, and draw. He can express himself with these tools. But art comes from within,” Hettinger states. “If you have nothing to say, then you are just a picture-maker, not an artist. Art speaks to the viewer on a personal level.” (
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First Collected by

Suzan Hamer


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