BIO / Experience

About Kirby Shaw

Kirby began drawing and painting as a child, after seeing his friend’s mom’s studio and watching her work. His personal work is mostly plein air landscapes in watercolor and oils. As an avid traveler, hiker and surfer, Kirby has always had a love for the landscapes he explored, and usually carried a small paint kit with him. The paintings in this website express his love of the landscape, the sky and the light that is unique to the location.     

Working on site means really observing the light and the feel of a place – the geology of the environment, the sky and the atmosphere. Kirby painted frequently in the California Central Coast and Big Sur, the High Sierra, The Grand Canyon, Baja, and the Caribbean – all dramatic places of land, sky and light. The new Cloud Waves and Sky Lights is there as well. His new series “Cloud Waves and Sky Lights” is also included here in the Paintings section, and is on view at the Art and Soul Gallery in Grenada March 2nd, 2017.

Education & Experience

BA Degree in Art, Photography and History; San Diego State University, 1970


California Teaching Credential, 1971, also at SDSU.


Graduate work for one year at San Francisco Art Institute 1975


Taught Art for 25 years in three different California High Schools, including Advanced Placement Art. (Teacher of the Year, 1995, the Coast Union High School District in Cambria, California.)


Oceana Maps: Commercial Illustration. His company (with artist and wife Xandra) specialized in producing decorative, “old-world” style maps for major wine areas in California, for many of the American national parks, and for cruise ship companies. The work was carried in the California Gift Mart. Kirby and Xandra were on the U.S.G.S.’s List of American Map Makers for over ten years.