Gourd art is an old art form that is practiced in cultures all over the world. Primitive cultures used gourds for utilitarian purposes and embellished them with crude tools. Today, gourd art ranges from simple craft projects to astonishing works of art made by nationally recognized gourd artists.
Roy’s interest in gourds began when he planted some seeds that his daughter had given him. These seeds turned out to be gourds and white pumpkins. The gourds flourished, taking over his garden. He used the gourds to make painted bird houses which he sold at a local arts and crafts show. During a vacation to the Southwest, he and his wife met and visited with some gourd artists. These artists peaked Roy’s interest and introduced him to the world of gourd art.
Roy had an interest in art from an early age. One summer, before he graduated high school, Roy worked on a cattle ranch in Montana where discovered the artwork of Charles Russell. This sparked his interest in Western art. Upon graduating from high school, he received a scholarship to study art at Lee Jr. College. After a year, he decided to put college on hold so he could join the Air Force. After four years he was discharged from service and Roy resumed his college education, graduating with a degree in art from Lamar University. Roy then began a career in sales. After working a corporate job for more than 30 years, he retired and was able to pursue his interest in pen and ink drawing. He started out drawing local historical landmarks on paper. He was then able to combine his passion for gourds with his passion for drawing by using a technique called pyrography (fire drawing) to draw his beautiful artworks on gourds.