Jan Martin McGuire is known as an artist and naturalist who paints nature’s diversity. Born in the foothills of the Rockies in Colorado she developed an early love of the out of doors. As an inveterate tomboy she spent her days climbing trees, catching snakes and drawing the animals she loved. This love of nature stayed with her when her parents moved to Oklahoma when she was twelve. Recognizing her art ability, her parents encouraged her to pursue her calling by enrolling her in art classes at the local art museum. She continued her studies by majoring in fine art at the University of Tulsa. The curriculum of totally modern/abstract art soon stifled Jan however, and she quit to follow her own path.
Since turning professional in 1983 Jan has exclusively depicted the nature and wildlife she holds such a bond with. She depicts Africa, Rainforest, and North American subjects with equal expertise. Studying nature and all its intricacies is a passion of Jan’s. She strongly believes that to depict nature in such a way as to evoke emotion from the viewer, the artist must experience all the nuances of the out-of-doors. To touch the velvety textures of moss, to smell the pungent spruces in a marshy bog, to let the whistling wind of the tundra lift your hair from your forehead – all these things must be inside an artist to be able to come out convincingly from the end of a paint brush.
Jan travels extensively in a constant quest to satisfy the gnawing hunger inside her, which is to learn and experience nature in everyway she can. Jan has traveled extensively all over North America including Alaska, British Columbia, Ontario, Yellowstone, Montana, the Everglades and the deserts of the Southwest. To study neo-tropical rainforest Jan has traveled to Guatemala, Peru (where she lead a group for the National Zoo upriver on the Amazon), and Costa Rica. However, Jan is totally hooked on Africa – traveling almost every year since her first trip in 1996. Jan has been to five African countries – Kenya, Tanzania, Nambia, Zimbabwe and Zambia. But she and her wildlife photographer husband love east Africa. They honeymooned in Kenya – and plan to move to Tanzania in 2018. Jan and James enjoy sharing their beloved Africa with others and occasionally lead groups there. In 2003 and again now in 2018 they are leading groups of artists on conservation projects to raise awareness and funds for their art. Conservation is Jan’s passion.