This bit is from our archives. Dr. Harvey’s recent trip to Pensacola, Florida to open his exhibit The Lure of the Ocean, at the Pensacola Museum of Art got us nostalgic. The Lure of the Ocean is Dr. Harvey’s first exhibit at a certified art museum and opened with terrific reviews.
Over the years, it’s impossible to describe how many amazing friends I’ve made in the marine community. Of course, some of my closest are those who share my passion for creating marine artwork such as Kent Ullberg, Wyland and photographer Richard Gibson. In fact, it was Richard who first published my art to the fishing public. Back in the early 1980s, when I was still a full-time college professor, my art was private. I had been painting and drawing since my childhood, and it was just a wonderful hobby.
A journalist friend of mine, Barbara Currie, and the late Scott Boyd of Boyd’s Tackle Store in Ft. Lauderdale, suggested I exhibit at the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show in 1986, which I did. To my surprise, I sold out of every drawing I brought to the show. Soon after that, Richard encouraged me to publish my work. Richard had a respected journal called Tournament Digest that focused on the big game fishing tournaments. When I showed him some of my black and white, pen and ink drawings, he immediately tried to convince me to let him put one on the cover.I recall saying something like, “Oh no, I’ll never draw or paint for money. This is something I do because I enjoy it.”
Richard humored me and then finally talked me into colorizing one of the drawings so it would be suitable for the cover. The response was fantastic and, according to Richard, everyone was asking him about this unknown artist and where they could get some of his work. Without friends like Richard, Scott and Barbara, I might still be teaching marine biology. Certainly, there’s nothing wrong with that, but my career path as an artist has led me on adventures I’d never have imagined. Most importantly, it has allowed me to raise a lot of money for marine research and education, something I would probably never would have been able to do as a teacher.
If you ever run into Richard, he will gladly tell you the story of our meeting with great embellishment and wild hand gestures. And even if you never meet him, we’ve brought him to you with a fantastic, 10-page photo portfolio in this issue. Richard sent us about 100 images from which to choose, and trying to cull them down was a nearly impossible mission. He’s truly one of the best shooters in the business and I’m sure you’ll agree.