About Me

A Little About Me

lee-mims-about-page-imageI was raised on a farm in Raleigh, North Carolina, and received my Masters Degree in Geology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Some might ask how I happened to become an artist after being trained as a scientist. I think my childhood on a farm created in me a lifelong love of animals and the great outdoors and a desire to recreate the beauty I saw around me.

Later, being a field geologist not only deepened to my appreciation of the natural world but, by studying the elements, the chemistry involved in geology, I gained a deeper understanding of pigments and how to mix them and use them to achieve the effects I constantly strive for today, an approximation of life.

Like many self-taught artists, I started painting as a diversion from my career which changed after my children were born from being a geologist to being a horse trainer. Soon requests from friends for portraits of their children, horses and various pets led me to start a small studio. That was twenty-five years and many portraits ago. My clientele includes doctors, judges, educators, businessmen and women, a United States Senator and lots of children.

Around my twelfth year of painting primarily horses and portraits, I felt the need to expand my painting to include other subjects and started painting wildlife and landscapes. I studied for many years under the watchful eye of longtime Raleigh artist, illustrator and author of several art books, Bill Tilton. And, because all artists need to paint outdoors in the embrace of nature as much as possible, I’ve studied plein-air painting with master artists, John Seerey-Lester of Osprey, Florida and Heiner Hurtling of Milford, Michigan.

For many years I took my art on the road and exhibited in wildlife and fine art shows some of which I’ve listed here:

The East Carolina Wildlife Art Festival, NC
The Clearwater Fine Arts Festival, FL
The Federal Duck Stamp Contest, VA
Seaside Art Gallery International Miniature Art Show, NC
North Carolina Wildlife Art Show, NC
The Wetlands Institute Wings ‘N Water Fine Arts Festival, NJ
The National Aviary Wings & Wildlife Art Show, PA
North Carolina State Fair, NC
Florida Wildlife Exposition, FL
John A. Logan College Museum Wildlife & Nature Art Exhibit, IL
Arts for the Parks, Jackson Hole, WY
Indiana Wildlife & Fine Arts Exhibit, IN
The Bosque Conservatory Art Classic, TX

I’ve exhibited my work in solo exhibits in galleries as well as The North Carolina Estuarium and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science.

I paint exclusively in oil on canvas, linen or treated panels and use only the finest quality oils with the highest amount of pigment available on the market today to create a work that I feel will endure for generations to come.