About Terry Lawson Dunn

Terry Lawson Dunn was born in Los Angeles, California and was immersed in a world of art from day one. With two commercial artists for parents, art materials and large tables were always available as playthings. Although she pursued wildlife science and environmental communication as a career, creating art has been a way for her to capture the natural places and wild animals she loves.

Soon after undergraduate school, she worked on bird research in Panama. During the afternoon siestas, she would pick up her pen and inks or watercolors and visually record the colorful birds she studied each morning. When she moved to Costa Rica, she continued to spend time in tropical rain forests, drawing and painting what she saw. In more recent years, she has traveled repeatedly back to Central America, the Amazon basin, France, and Switzerland in search of striking new subjects. 

Upon moving to Albuquerque in 2001, she quickly became infatuated with the wide open spaces and clear sunlight. By switching to soft pastels, she was better able to capture the rich colors and dramatic lighting that she found in the New Mexican landscape and in her travels around the world. Using archival sanded paper as a surface, Terry layers numerous colors of pastel one on top of the other, sometimes wetting sections of the piece midway to create an underpainting. She primarily selects realistic colors for her paintings, but will also choose a few unexpected accents.

In addition to creating her own artwork, Terry has published the book, “Art of the National Parks”, curated art shows for the New Mexico Cancer Center for 7 years, and has organized group trips to Panama, Africa and Spain.