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Mickey Lee McGinty

Early Life and Childhood...


Mick McGinty was born on December 7, 1952, in Sioux City, Iowa, and raised just across the river from Sioux City in northeast Nebraska, growing up in the small town of South Sioux City. His parents, Mike McGinty and Dorothy "Mudge" McGinty (née Love) were hard workers, with Mike working as an over-the-road trucker and Mudge working at the local beef packing plant, IBP.  He attended South Sioux City High School and graduated in 1971.


High School and Army Years...


He had an average exposure to art and the creation of it, the kind of exposure that most people get growing up in a small town. Art classes in High School weren't a huge priority in the 1970's in Nebraska, but he was encouraged by teachers to think about pursuing a career in art because they saw some real promise in his work. But that would have to wait a few years though. After graduation from High School he spent two years in the Army, serving a year of that time in South Korea. During that time in Korea he was often asked to use his artistic talents by creating logos and murals of various kinds which was a welcome diversion from Army life.


After his release from the military in mid 1973, he eventually found his way to Southern California a year later in 1974. He immediately found work at Knott's Berry Farm drawing pastel portraits at Bell's Portrait Studio, founded by the artist it is named after, Claude Bell. Bell was also the the sculptor/artist that created the huge dinosaur attraction near Palm Springs.  For the next three years he produced thousands of portraits and commissioned pastel paintings for visitors of the Park while also attending Fullerton Junior College. While still in Fullerton he married his wife Kerry in 1976 and after earning his AA Degree in 1977, moved to Pasadena to pursue his Bachelor of Arts Degree at Art Center College of Design. He entered as a Third Term Scholarship Student and graduated with High Honors with a BA Degree in Illustration in 1979.


Going to California: College and Early Career...


Soon after graduation he was hired by the legendary Willardson and White Design in Santa Monica, California. He immediately started working on album covers, movie posters, and major product advertising campaigns, producing images for Superman: the Movie, Flash Gordon, .38 Special, The Police, MTV's roll-out and first ever ad campaign, Adidas magazine ads, and McDonalds promotions, to name a few.  In the four years as a studio artist there, he had managed to build an illustration portfolio of hundreds of nationally known clients which enabled him to start his freelance career that continued until his retirement and switch into fine art painting.


Mick and his family left California in 1993, and for the next 14 years they lived near his hometown of South Sioux City, Nebraska, just across the Missouri River in Dakota Dunes, South Dakota. During their time there, their children had graduated High School, and one by one left for college or to get married...all settling back west in California and Arizona.


Arizona and Switch to Fine Art Painting...


Eventually, in 2007 he and his wife moved to Gilbert, Arizona to be closer to where their kids were living. While still working as a freelance illustrator, he had spent the last 15 years primarily producing fine art and commissions of all kinds, refining his passion for oil painting.


In 2012 he built his third custom designed artist studio (this time detached from the main house), where he was able to get as noisy and smelly as he wanted to all hours of the night without bothering anyone. 


Over his 40 plus years as an artist he had produced visuals for the NFL, Universal Studios, and nearly all movie studios and video game producers as well as almost all of the major advertising agencies. Some of the most notable from those were posters for the movies Field of DreamsHarry and Hendersons, Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Dragnet, Curse of the Pink Panther and many more, as well as video game covers for the Street Fighter series, Streets of Rage 2, Kid Chameleon, and Zoo Tycoon series to name a few.




  • "Best of Show" 2018 City of Glendale Plein Air Painting Festival

  • "Best of Show" 2018 City of Casa Grande Plein Air Painting Competition

  • "First Place" 2018 APAP, (Arizona Plein Air Painters), Members Show

  • Participant in the 2018, 10th Annual Grand Canyon Celebration of Art

  • Merit Award, 2018 Sonoran Desert Plein Air Festival, presented by WHAM

  • "First Place"  2018 Desert Ridge Plein Air Painting Festival

  • "Judges Choice Award" 2018 Sedona Plein Air Festival, L'Auberge de Sedona Creekside Quick Paint

  • "Judges Choice Award" 2018 Sedona Plein Air Festival, Seven Canyons Quick Paint

  • "Award of Merit" 2018 Sedona Plein Air Festival

NEXT: Personal and Family Life

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