These Paintings Make Perfect Gifts for Your Country-Loving Friends

humble donkey
Photography by Caroline Smith

Text by Hannah Jones

Photography by Caroline Smith

The day that John Lowery decided to pick up his brush and paint for fun for the first time, he never could have imagined the ride that he was about to take. A commercial illustrator his entire life, John wasn’t a stranger to the arts by any means. But painting just for the sheer joy of it—that was a different story. “I never painted for fun, really. I was always paid to paint,” he says.

John considers himself a lifelong artist, always having a passion to create. “My first accolade was a little statue of a mouse holding a paintbrush that my mom gave me that said, ‘World’s Greatest Artist,’” he jokes. After an internship with NASA’s art department, John was quickly launched into the world of marketing, becoming an illustrator for a variety of companies.

Photography by Caroline Smith

But one day, he passed a longhorn in his hometown of Burton, Texas, and decided to paint the boasting bovine. Six months and nine paintings later, he opened his own gallery in the antiques capital of the nation, Round Top, Texas, and has since made nearly 100 original paintings as well as high-quality reproductions, prints, and other Lone Star State memorabilia.

The call to paint pastoral scenes came naturally to John, a country boy at heart. “I try to paint things here in this area of Texas,” he says. “I want to be transported back to this land.” His art reflects the countryside that he holds so dear, depicting creatures far and wide that he’s found on his land, from stately longhorns to unassuming owls. The vivid imagery pulls the eyes in as almost a window into the country and a simpler way of life.

Photography by Caroline Smith

Needless to say, his clients feel the same. With his paintings in homes across the nation, including New York and California, he’s scattered pieces of the Lone Star State from coast to coast. “People visit this area and I think my paintings remind them of this place that they fall in love with,” he says. “A good painting will transport you, and I think that’s what these do.”

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