Willard Gayheart, Appalachian Artist


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About the Book

Willard Gayheart, a pencil artist from eastern Kentucky who now lives in southwestern Virginia, presents the history, people and culture of the Appalachian region. This book combines a biography of Gayheart with a portfolio of his work and his comments on his inspirations and techniques. His art has its roots in his childhood and his memories of that time inspire him today. Gayheart is also known for his portrayals of Appalachian musicians and ways of life, and many such drawings are reproduced here.

About the Author(s)

Willard Gayheart is a gifted pencil artist, songwriter and musician. He owns an art and frame shop, The Front Porch Gallery, in Woodlawn, Virginia, and divides his time between music and drawing.

Writer and researcher Donia S. Eley is based in Pulaski, Virginia. An avid music lover and art collector, she devotes much of her free time to causes throughout and beyond the New River Valley, among them the preservation and perpetuation of art, music, land conservation and Appalachian culture.

Bibliographic Details

Willard Gayheart and Donia S. Eley

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 199
Bibliographic Info: 81 photos, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2003
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1661-5
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Contributions to Southern Appalachian Studies

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii
Preface      1
Introduction      5

Early Life and Family      5
Beginning a New Career      11
Getting to Know the Artist      13
The Artist and His Music      14
Techniques of the Artist      18
Drawing on the Appalachian Experience      20
Appalachian Values      22
The Art of Willard Gayheart      27

Bibliography      185
Index      187

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “you will look at a pencil with respect from now on! Every page of this book evokes emotion from the reader”—Blue Ridge Traditions
  • “beautifully presents nearly a hundred drawings spanning Gayheart’s artistic life…well-written introduction”—Watauga Mountain Times
  • “finely detailed pictures of people and scenes typical of life in the southern mountain region…one of the most prolific and recognizable artists in his genre”—Goldenseal