In our last post, we featured a puzzle with the artwork of Jim Daly. Barbara’s comment that she loved the puzzle of the little boy taking a bath inspired me to look up what other Jim Daly art we have. Turns out, there’s quite a few! Some of them I’d even saved to my wishlist without realizing that they were from the same artist.
If you like art that “shows life as good, honest, wholesome and clean, full of hope and inspiration,” then Jim Daly’s art is for you. He says that if he can attract people to these kinds of principles then “I feel as if I’ve said something in my art.”
Jim Daly’s images feature a lot of children. Of them he says, “In a sense my paintings are just me reliving my own childhood and my own life experiences, or maybe the way I would have liked it to be. I’m really moved by the memories of days gone by. Sometimes I think the memories are better than the reality. I love to paint children. There’s an innocence they have that I never get tired of trying to put on canvas.”
Daly knew he wanted to be an artist even when he was a young boy. He was born in Oklahoma but moved to Los Angeles at an early age in the years right after WWII. Of his childhood, Daly remembers that he was always drawing—and his mom was always encouraging.
“I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t drawing. My Mom was always telling me what a great artist I was. She would make so much out of my drawings that I believed her. She made [my brother] Clayne and I think we were great.”
“My paintings are just a reflection of my boyhood,” Daly says. “We rode our bikes, played baseball in vacant lots, and shot marbles, all the things kids do, and there was always a dog following us around.”
Before becoming an artist, Daly dropped out of school to join the army, then while stationed in Panama in the infantry division, he joined the boxing team. He considered becoming a professional boxer, but went to art school instead.
He married and had four children, but tragically lost his youngest at the age of six years old. After he divorced his first wife, he married his second wife, Carol. They have been together for 33 years. She teaches at the University of Oregon.
Daly finds that his work and art is always evolving.
“Art for me is a continuous search,” he says. “When I was young and starting out as an artist I wanted to learn everything I could. I wanted to know exactly what I was doing but every time I finished a painting it never met up to my expectations and I felt like a failure. As time went by it didn’t get any easier and I still didn’t understand what I was doing. When I heard the joke, ‘By the time I found out I had no talent it was to late; I was already famous’ it scared the heck out of me. Then one day I was watching TV and I happened to catch Allan Alda giving the commencement speech at his daughter’s graduation and he said a sentence that changed my life: ‘CREATIVITY IS NEVER QUITE KNOWING WHAT YOU’RE DOING.’ I then realized that it’s not desirable to know exactly what I’m doing and I’ve never looked back.”
To learn more about Jim Daly, check out his website’s autobiography section. And remember that all the Jim Daly puzzles are offered by SunsOut and right now we are running a special where you can buy 3 SunsOut puzzles and get one FREE!