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Bonnie Marris

Wildlife artist Bonnie Marris' fascination with animals began at an early age when, at the age of two, she spent hours in front of the wolf cage at the zoo, enraptured by the animals within. The attention to detail evident in her work is a consequence of long hours studying her subjects in the field and her background in illustration.

Bonnie Marris has taken an unusual path into art; she developed her talent by portraying animals "from the inside out." While she was a student at Michigan State University, Bonnie illustrated several major books. One volume she worked on was a leading expert's mammalogy text that contained several hundred drawings and detail studies. This massive project attracted the attention of noted zoologist George Schaller, who invited Bonnie to prepare the art for posters that would support his worldwide rare animal relief programs.

In addition to her accomplished skill at rendering her subjects and evident affinity for the wild, Marris' painting requires frequent and substantive field experience. Each year, Bonnie makes two major trips, and countless smaller ones, to observe and learn about the wildlife she loves.

In 1980, one such voyage took her to Alaska, where she lived in the wilderness for six months. She recounts, "To get into a natural environment and see the animals on their own terms is as important as knowing the animals themselves. For instance, gray wolves on the tundra -the vast, vast tundra with the wind and other forces of nature at their most extreme- that's what makes them what they are. To stand not far from a grizzly that is so overpowering, so beautiful and so large . . . to watch it pull up a small tree with a swipe of its paw and just a few minutes later see it delicately picking blueberries with its black lips. . . . Alaska changed me; it gave me the biggest incentive to paint and increased my interest in the predators: the cats, bears, coyotes,wolves and foxes. They exist on so many levels. Their moods show in their eyes and we can learn so much from them."

Marris' works were selected for the 2002-2005 Gene Autry Museum of Western Heritage Show.


Heart And Soul

The Courtship

Into The Great Wide Open

For The Love Of Snow

Morning On Honey Creek

The Food Critic

First Impressions

Clean Linen

Frosty Winter

Undivided Attention

Into Blanco Canyon

Ice Princess

Sweet Tooth

Early Blizzard

Rocky Lookout

Morning Magic

Escape By A Hare

Mountain Mama

The Power Of Freedom

Eye To Eye


Social Viewpoints

His Favorite Spot


Summer Fields

Lazy Days On The Big Crooked

Heavy Drifting

Tough As Stones

Lucky Catch

Hidden Secrets

Wolf Kiss

Morning Muses

Raven´S Path

Clotilda´S Perfect Day

Crossing The Big Sandy


Testing The Waters

News And Commentary

Idle Hours

The Joy Of Mud


The Watchers

Hide And Seek With The Sun

Maxfield´S Garden

Too Much Information

Contemplating The Dragonfly

The Ties That Bind

The Terrible Twos

Morning Run

Night Cap

Night And Day

Sing Out

Queen Anne´S Lace

Thunder And Dust

Out Foxed


Jack's Night To Win

Spirit Unbroken

Her Power And Her Glory

Frogs For Breakfast

The All American

Catch Of The Day


Black Magic

The Gifts Of Spring


The Gold Thread

Old Faithful


Sun Splashed

For The Love Of Pete

Dog Days

A Little Pig With A Big Heart

Catch The Wind

Where Best Friends Are Welcome

Dairy Queens

The Gift

The Dartmoor Ponies

Big Gray's Barn And Bistro


Lady Marmalade's Bed & Breakfast

Spring Fever

Sun Bath

To Stand And Endure

Security Blanket

The Comeback

End Of The Season

Under The Morning Star

The Stillness (Grizzly&Cubs)

Cops & Robbers

Mom's Shadow

Of Myth And Magic

Bugles And Trumpets!

New Beginnings

The Playground Showoff


Waiting For The Freeze


Above The Glacier

Honey Creek Whitetails


Other Footsteps

Best Friends

Kenai Dusk

The Fishing Lesson