Since he was a little boy, Greg Lewallen has collected objects of natural history, from insects and birds to reptiles and animal skulls. These are often the subjects of his artwork. His personal fascination with the natural world has led him on collecting expeditions to exotic and remote regions of Africa and tropical America and provided him with a lifetime’s worth of material to draw and paint. For Greg, the compulsion to collect and draw is directly linked to his desire to share his excitement with those that may not otherwise recognize the hand of God in the beauty of the micro-sized world that is all around us.
My artwork is deeply personal to me and it is as much about the journey as it is the destination. In this way, my art is very much analogous to my passion for collecting insects, and may be better understood in this regard. When I go on expedition, there are always target species that I have researched and hope to actually find on the trip. When I do find a target species, it is especially gratifying that the research and planning has paid off. Ultimately, however, it is the joy of the hunt itself that makes it so invigorating. The bug was the reason for going, but it is just the frosting on the cake, as the sights, sounds, and smells of being in a different, unknown environment and the accompanying experiences that it brings, are just as compelling. When I begin a particular artwork, I may have an idea of where I want to go with it, but I am always confronted with problems and situations that have to be worked out. While I may not always end up with the piece that I originally envisioned, it is the journey that is so exhilarating for me.