Steve Santmyer Biography
Steve Santmyer (1939 - ) Stephen Thurston Santmyer has been an active artist for over 60 years. He is a descendant of the Thurston family, one of the original founding families of Laguna Beach. Steve's grandfather, J. S. Thurston wrote "Laguna Beach of Early Days", which was published in 1947, with a second printing in 2012. Steve's Aunt Helen Hooven Santmyer, was the best selling author of "And Ladies of the Club", which was published in 2000.
As a young boy living in the artists colony of Laguna Beach, Steve's mother Virginia, his Aunt Doris, and his grandparents were close friends with many well known Laguna artists. These artists included Edgar and Elsie Palmer Payne, Peterpaul Ott, Anna Hills, William Wendt and many more. This group of California artists were internationally recognized, and during this time Steve's family helped support these artists by collecting many of their paintings.
Amongst Steve's many influences, Peterpaul Ott (1895-1992) took the young man under his artistic wing and taught him the finer points of sculpture. He then studied with many of the other Laguna painters to perfect his works on canvas and paper. In that spirit, Steve has always been willing to teach the finer points of watercolor, oil, and acrylic to other aspiring artists.
Steve has painted in many locations around the world. He painted extensively in Spain, Mexico, Hawaii, the Pacific Northwest, and up and down the California coast (with an emphasis on Southern California).
Steve's paintings have been exhibited in several prestigious venues. Including the permanent collections of the Hilbert Museum of California Art, the Inland Empire Museum of Art, and many private and corporate art collections around the world.
Interview with the artist, 2001 & 2020 - California Watercolor