As a native Californian, I have enjoyed exploring our state, spending time in both southern and northern California and particularly in the Sierras. The diversity of landscape and bountiful natural beauty has informed my work on many levels. The outdoors - nature - is endlessly fascinating and there is a kind of freedom in just being out there. Painting outside is watching things change - sometimes slowly and quietly, almost imperceptibly - sometimes suddenly and surprisingly, but always inexorably changing.

I have lived and worked as an artist in Santa Barbara since 1973. After undergraduate and graduate studies at UCSB, I started my teaching career at Santa Barbara City College. For me teaching and learning are on equal footing. Staying engaged and curious keeps me going.

In 2012, I retired and have devoted much of my time to art making  - particularly plein air painting. It’s a continual challenge and a great way to combine the things I love to do most.

have you ever asked why painters paint landscapes? is it possible because it is a process of reaching? reaching for the sun, light on sand, grass, trees and substance, the nature of rocks, mountains, clouds? or is it simply for self-realization in relation to life itself?
— Ray Strong
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