Alumni - Profiles - David Shapleigh

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DAVID SHAPLEIGH - BFA in Illustration, 1995

On his work:

I am currently a Visiting Lecturer of Fine Arts at Bridgewater State College, Montserrat College of Art, and Newbury College. I spend time daily in my studio and I am currently working on a series of drawings about tools and paintings that are portraits of my immediate family. I do not consider myself to be a realist, but an object maker, or an artist that wants to show the facts or truth about the object.

On his recent accomplishments:

In 2007, my work will be featured at the Imago Gallery in Warren, Rhode Island. In the past year, my work has been featured at the Energy Gallery in Toronto, and Long Beach Arts in California.

On his proudest achievement as an artist:

Recently, I was selected for a prestigious 2007 Clowes Fellowship at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont.


The CVPA Fine Art Department's focus on developing strong visual perception skills through drawing has greatly prepared me to be an artist. I truly realized the strength of my undergraduate training in graduate school. So many faculty members contributed to my success at UMass Dartmouth. Especially inspiring were Professors Anthony Fisher, Sig Haines, Pamela Hoss, Bryan McFarlane and Janine Wong. They constantly drove me to work harder and smarter.

On lessons learned in the "real world":

You have to put time into your work daily. In the years since leaving UMass Dartmouth, I've realized it's far more important to follow your gut than to latch on to what's 'hot' in your field of study. Perhaps most importantly, I've found it very rewarding and beneficial to network with other artists-both in and out of my field.

Advice for today's students:

Listen to what your professors and peers are saying about your artwork and be willing to experiment with your ideas and your approach. This critical feedback is one of the best things you'll get out of art school.