J A M E S   B A M A

James Bama is considered by many as the most "realistic" illustrator in a galaxy of talented artists.Through his simple, yet powerful compositions, he breathes life and humanity into his subjects. Critics and collectors classify him as a Western artist. He calls himself an "American Realist."

As a child, Bama loved the comic strips of Flash Gordon and Tarzan, and knew even then he wanted to be an artist. After graduating from the High School of Music and Art in New York City, he studied drawing and anatomy at the Art Students League before launching his career with the Charles E. Cooper Studios in New York City in 1951.

Bama's artistic skills permitted him to continue drawing, despite a growing encroachment on the market from television and photography. In a profile piece about artists who have made the successful transition from illustration to painting western art in Art of the West , Bama says,"It was cheaper than having to build a set. I could do winter stuff in summer and summer stuff in winter. I was busy."

In an extremely successful twenty-two year career as a commercial artist, he produced book covers, movie posters and illustrations for such notable magazines as Saturday Evening Post, Argosy and Reader's Digest . In 1968, Bama moved to Wyoming to pursue his love for portraying contemporary Western subjects, saying goodbye to his career as an illustrator.


The Appaloosa


  18"h x 24"w



Winter Time

  20"h x 20"w

Northfork Winter

  18"h x 24"w

Continue to Page Two of James Bama's original artwork.

Click here to view James Bama's first page sketches.

To view some of Jim's Etchings, please click here.

View Limited Edition Prints that can be purchased through our Tubac Gallery.

If you are interested in finding out more information about this artist or their artwork, please see our Contact page.

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