Born in San Francisco, Ethan Cranke was raised in Sonoma County, both aesthetically and intellectually, on the values prominently associated with Northern California. With an emphasis on free-spirited creativity that is anchored in a devotion to nature and humanity, Ethan conveys what is around and inside of him almost exclusively through the medium of oil paint.
Ethan has painted ever since he can remember. Things began to get serious when he first encountered his earliest mentor, Elfi Chester. She was a good friend and a great painter, whose advice he has dearly missed since she passed away July 16, 2004. She made clear that it was perfectly viable for a person to spend their life as a professional artist, rather than as a hobbyist.
He left the comforts of the West Sonoma County redwoods, in 1997, to study painting at the San Francisco Art Institute. There he was allowed to thoroughly explore his medium, mostly under the guidance of Bruce McGaw (of the Bay Area Figurative Movement) and Jeremy Morgan. Having returned to Sonoma County in 2002, he has been painting full time at his Guerneville studio ever since.
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