Steven Allen Simpson (born, 1958) was drawn to nature and the visual arts at an early age. Growing up on Massachusetts' North Shore, his backyard was New England's woods and coastline. He says, 'A love of the land and ocean was my parents' greatest gift to me.' Enjoying drawing, watercolors, wood carving, photography and oil painting as a young man, he was inspired to study art in college, receiving his BA in Fine Art from Salem State University in 1982. Steven began a career in graphic arts and spent more than twenty years working for Sky & Telescope magazine, first as illustrator, eventually as art director. While he enjoyed painting scenes of exploding stars and black holes, he never lost his love of earthbound landscapes. A turning point in his painting came in 1997, when Steven read Kevin Macpherson's book, Fill your Oil Paintings with Light and Color. Plein aire painting, while challenging, could satisfy two of his loves: being outdoors and creating art. Classes at Mass College of Art, the Decordova Museum school, and Plein Aire Painters of America followed. Steven explains, 'Nothing is more artistically satisfying to me than painting from nature. From the mountains to the ocean, the colors, textures, and geometry offer me endless inspiration. My work can best be described as loose realism. I aspire to create paintings that are direct and expressive.'