Posted by Communications Department at 8/24/2016
He calls himself a third generation landscape painter and jokes that he is genetically expected to paint! His father and great-grandfather were landscape artists. Dan Mondloch, a 2001 graduate of Apollo, is well-known for his beautiful, award-winning, watercolor paintings. He’s been featured in PBS “Postcards,” SPLASH 17 book and Pleinair Magazine’s “PlenAir Collector.”
Mondloch has been exposed to artistry and painting his entire life. He remembers sitting in his father’s studio as a child.
“I remember as far back as second grade,” says Mondloch. “I was with my three older brothers, and one day, my dad was doing a demonstration in his studio. He’d do them all the time. It was usually a mountain or a desert. I sat in the back working on my painting and was so proud to show him when I was done. I showed him my painting of my mountain. My dad said proudly, ‘That’s a great mountain! However, today we’re doing a desert!’”
That kind of love and support never stopped for Mondloch, it’s something he’s always appreciated.
“All of my [District 742] teachers starting in fifth grade were very supportive of me,” shares Mondloch. “My eighth grade teacher allowed me to go to the library to do projects and always said, ‘I’ll be here if you need me.’”
By the time he was a freshman, Mondloch knew he wanted to paint. While driving with his dad, he told him he wanted to start painting. The next morning, he found all the paint supplies he’d ever need waiting for him.
It was that February after conferences of his freshman year, when the counselor called him in asking for samples of his artwork. Mondloch was immediately transferred to one of Dennis Hummel’s classes. Mondloch took every art class he could.
To this day, Mondloch still works with Hummel at the Paramount Theatre and continues to be a valuable source for him.
By his senior year, his artwork was entered into a high school art show. He received a call to attend the reception. He was surprised to find that he won the Bill Ellingson award for his work.
Mondloch has found a new passion in painting plein air, meaning open air or outdoors.
“Lately plein air is my largest passion. My focus keeps changing. I think that’s what keeps me going,” says Mondloch. “That spark to keep exploring, it [plein air] gets me out with that sense of adventure.”
California, Florida, Maryland and Colorado are just a few states that Mondloch has traveled to continue plein air painting.
Looking to the future, Mondloch would like to be more nationally recognized and continue to build on the community of plein air painters.
His advice to anyone thinking about being an artist, “If you’re interested, there will be no shortage of people that say that you can’t or shouldn’t. Stick it out for the long haul. Just know that it is possible. You need to do the business aspect of it. A quote by Frank Webb, ‘Success in watercolors painters is not measured in how many created paintings you have, but by how many acres you have.’”
Right now, Mondloch is really enjoying life with his wife and new born son.