David Tanner is a representational oil painter in Richmond, Virginia. Since receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in illustration from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1991, his study of traditional painting technique includes workshops with modern masters Nelson Shanks in Philadelphia and Robert Liberace in Washington DC.
After more than a decade of commissioned oil portraiture, David has focused on figurative and plein-air painting since 2006. Frequent traveling has provided rich opportunities for capturing the light and color of locations in Russia, Italy, Spain, Morocco, and Great Britain. While visiting painting collections in these countries, David has studied the work of Sargent, Sorolla, Zorn, Repin, and other late 19th and early 20th century masters.
National awards include thirteen paintings honored in the Portrait Society of America’s Member’s Only Competition between 2011 & 2019. Between 2018 and 2020, David has been awarded two “Certificate of Excellence” awards and one “Select 50” award in The Portrait Society's International Portrait Competition.
David's Self-Portrait won 1st prize in American Artist magazine’s annual competition and was featured on the cover of this respected publication in September 2012. A five-page interview on his working methods can be found in the April 2015 issue of PleinAir Magazine. In 2019, the online magazine Realism Today published his article on creating narratives in figure paintings. He has also been featured in Fine Art Connoisseur and American Art Collector. In November 2016, David was interviewed for PBS television's "Virginia Currents".
Juried national exhibitions include Oil Painters of America, Salon International, Plein-Air Richmond, and Bath County Plein-Air Festival.
David is an active member of the Portrait Society of America and teaches oil painting at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond, where he was elected Master Teacher in 2006.