Born and raised in Summer County, Foster Grissim’s first art classes were at Summer Academy. Drawing since a boy, he quickly began to excel in his craft. His passion turned to obsession in late high school under the guidance of a wonderful art instructor at The University School of Nashville named Elizabeth Mask. By the time he graduated, his work had won two scholastic awards and had begun to gain the attention of peers and faculty.
After high school, Foster attended Vol State, Eckerd College and Watkins College of Art before realizing the type of work he hoped to learn to produce wasn’t taught inside of a contemporary academic setting but rather in workshops, shared amongst colleagues, and discovered along through countless quiet hours in the studio. In 2013, Foster quit his job and school to paint full-time. Within weeks of taking the plunge, he had enough commissioned work to support his passion. “I owe a lot to my family, particularly my mom. She hung my work in her business, Profiles. Through Profiles, the community instantly took notice and for quite a while I couldn’t keep up with demand,” says Foster.
Foster painted around 380 paintings that first year. He narrowed his target to contemporary realism or academic figurative work. Upon his second year painting, he was sought out by a San Francisco based gallery Diablo Fine Art. He has had two solo shows in Nashville. Presently, he splits his time between Nashville and Denver and has been invited to study with his personal hero in the painting world, Quang Ho. In Denver, he paints models and landscapes from life while working daily with a phenomenal group of professional artists.
“My work has changed substantially since my first debut in Sumner County. I used to work primarily in spray paint and acrylic. These days I pursue the academic side of oil painting. I work in a variety of subject matters and styles – all with the single goal of refining the nuances of maturity in art,” he explains.
Foster’s newer work is available online and his older work is exhibited at the Bearded Iris Brewery in Germantown, as well as his mother’s business, Profiles. Support and follow this local artist on Instagram @watch_foster_paint. Contact him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org with any inquiries.