Rod Lawrence graduated with a fine arts degree, magna cum laude, from the University of Michigan in 1973. Since then he has been working full time as a professional artist. His credits include being named the Michigan Ducks Unlimited Artist of the Year in 1979 and the Michigan United Conservation Club’s Michigan Wildlife Artist of the Year in 1981. He also has the winning designs for the 1983 and 1990 Michigan Duck Stamps, and the 1981, 1987, and 1992 Michigan Trout Stamps. He had an unprecedented double win for both the 1995 Michigan Duck Stamp and 1995 Michigan Trout Stamp. His win for the 2000 & 2002 Michigan Duck Stamp makes him the only artists to have won nine Michigan stamp designs. He is the only artist to win five Michigan Duck Stamps and one of only two artists to win four Michigan Trout Stamps.
Lawrence has exhibited in many group and one-man shows, including the prestigious Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum’s “Birds in Art” and “Wildlife: The artist’s View” shows. From these shows, his work has been chosen several times for their national tour. His art has also appeared as covers, illustrations and features in many outdoor magazines. Three sets of limited edition collector plates also feature his work. He is also an active instructor for artists workshops. An instructional book “Painting Wildlife Textures” written and illustrated by Lawrence was published and released by North Light Books in March of 1997. It is now into it’s third printing. A second instructional book, called “Painting Basics – Waterfowl & Wading Birds” was released in December of 2000. His latest book project is a revised version for “Wildlife” an instructional book published by Walter Foster Publishing in 2004 of which he was the co-author. The revised book is called “Animals” and is entirely his work. The book was released in February of 2009. Lawrence’s first book has been updated and re-released in 2011 as one of the first North Light Books “Classics”. He is a signature member of the Society of Animal Artists.
A log cabin in the hardwoods of northern Michigan, overlooking the North branch of the Manistee River, is home for Lawrence and his wife, Susan. The symbol preceding his signature in each of his painting shows the importance of his family in his work. The oddly shaped “S” is for his wife Susan (an accomplished basket weaver and instructor), and the “M” and “B” represent their sons, Matthew and Brett.