Featured at the Bar-D Ranch

Scott Nelson
 



 

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We're pleased to feature Scott Nelson's painting, "Wilbur's Gift," as a Christmas Art Spur subject


2000, Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced
without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com; image from Wilbur's Gift (2000) by Rodney Nelson

Acrylic wash

"Wilbur's Gift"

 

Scott Nelson comments:

Some years ago Rodney Nelson (we share the same last name but are not related) came driving up our road for a visit. Rodney is a pretty famous person in these parts, he's about as close to a celebrity around here as one can get. I think he even was on the old Johnny Carson show one time. Waylon Jennings and Jessi Colter drove by the place years ago, but they were running late for somewhere and didn't have time to stop.

Rodney said he had a poem that he wanted illustrated and someone told him I may be able to fill the bill. I told Rod I'd give it a try but as luck would have it we were just getting into haying season and Rod wanted the pictures done as soon as possible. He wanted to get it printed by the fall and in time for the Christmas season. It wasn't an exceptional hay crop that summer so I was able to juggle haying and doing the pictures. I would get up about 2AM, get the coffee going, and work on pictures for several hours before I had to go out and bale. Occasionally we would get some rain and in that case I could work on the pictures most of the morning.

I sure liked the story Wilbur's Christmas Gift and it was easy to do the illustrations because with every line of the poem, the pictures would pop in my head. If Rod had come to me this past summer with the double bumper hay crop I had, I would have had to turn him down.

Rod had the book printed, a nice professionally bound, hardcover book that he had to make a visit to the banker to have done. I think Rod told the banker he needed the money to buy a new tractor or maybe some bred cows. I'm sure the banker would never have gave him the funds if he knew it was for a self-published book.

As it turned out the book was a phenomenal success and flew off the shelves in the manner of the Cabbage Patch doll or Beanie Baby when they were popular. Several older ladies were once seen fighting over one when supplies of the book got low.

The books were all gone several weeks before Christmas and left those who wanted the book in a desperate situation. Books showed up on eBay and went for ten times the original price.

I became somewhat of a minor celebrity and people would drive for many miles out to our place so I could sign their book and draw a small sketch on the flyleaf.

My fame quickly passed and now things are back to normal, spending my time breaking horses and following cows around.

Rodney Nelson comments:

I wrote Wilbur's Christmas Gift one day when I needed to write something for my daughter Annika to recite at a big Christmas show. I sat in a chair all day long as the story swirled in my mind. 

When I was done I thought of a wonderful little book I had read, A Cup of Christmas Tea...I thought then and there I should have someone illustrate my poem and make it into a book. 

I really liked Scott's drawings and for the first time knew exactly what Wilbur looked like. 

Scott is something like Wilbur: gentle, kind, and extremely modest. My favorite drawing is Wilbur standing with his hands at his side when he is getting his hugs.  Scott wouldn't know how to take a hug either. 


2000, Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission;
 www.scottnelsonart.com; image from Wilbur's Gift (2000) by Rodney Nelson
 

About Scott Nelson
excerpted from www.scottnelsonart.com

Scott Nelson is a small farmer/rancher, living just a few miles north of the Cannonball river and Standing Rock Indian Reservation in southwest North Dakota. He lives on the farm homesteaded by his grandfather in 1908 with his wife and two children.

Scott is a self-taught artist; he started drawing as a small child as soon as he learned to hold a pencil. Scott works with pen and ink, water color, acrylic wash, and oils. His subjects are mostly Western, contemporary and historical. Scott has illustrated several books and has been published in a number of magazines. He has contributed artwork to the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame Chronicle.

Several years ago, out of a deep respect for the World War Two generation and a lifelong interest in WWII aircraft, Scott started interviewing veteran aviators and illustrating their stories on canvas. As of the spring of 2007 Scott completed 13 large oil paintings and a number of smaller watercolors. The paintings are all based on real events occurring during the war. The veterans inspect the finished painting and suggest if there need to be any changes. When the painting meets their satisfaction, they sign the painting to authenticate it. These paintings have been donated to the Dakota Territory Air Museum in Minot, North Dakota, where they can be seen on display.

Several of these original paintings were on display in conjunction with the North Dakota WWII Exhibit at the North Dakota Heritage Center in Bismarck.
 

Find more at www.scottnelsonart.com.

Find  additional samples of Scott Nelson's art below.

 


Scott Nelson's Art

Below are a few sample images of Scott Nelson's work.
Find more about Scott Nelson at
www.scottnelsonart.com
 

Below:
Winter Stays Late
The Missouri Has a Secret
Dakota Demon
Dakota Kid

Books and book covers


Winter Stays Late

 
Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com
"Winter Stays Late"


The Missouri Has a Secret


Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com
"The Missouri Has a Secret"


Dakota Demon


Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com
"Dakota Demon"


Dakota Kid


Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com
"Dakota Kid"

Scott Nelson's web site includes veterans' stories. He wrote to us about one of the veterans who flew a P-51 Mustang, "Dakota Kid II," in World War II:

Noble Peterson, cowboy-rancher from Lemmon, South Dakota survived some of the most  dangerous air battles over Europe without a scratch, only to be done in by a green bronk soon after he returned home.

Noble was thrown and broke his pelvis in half! He was bedridden for many  months. It was three years before he could throw his leg over a horse again. He stayed on a horse from then on, rode well up into his eighties.

Noble passed away the spring of 2009. A P-51 Mustang buzzed the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery at Noble's burial.
....

Read the compete story about Noble Peterson here at Scott Nelson's web site.
 


Books and Book Covers

In addition to Wilbur's Christmas Gift, Scott Nelson has illustrated other books and book covers. He illustrated Montana ranch hand, picker and poet DW Groethe's A Charlie Creek Christmas & Other Wint'ry Tales of the West. His illustrations were featured along with a poem from that book here in 2007 in Christmas at the BAR-D.


 


1998, Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com; image from DW Groethe's A Charlie Creek Christmas & Other Wint'ry Tales of the West
 
 


1998, Scott Nelson; this image should not be reposted or reproduced without permission; www.scottnelsonart.com; image from DW Groethe's A Charlie Creek Christmas & Other Wint'ry Tales of the West
 

Find more books and their covers illustrated by Scott Nelson here at his web site.

 


 

 

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