Derek Penix was born on December 29, 1980 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Growing up Penix was surrounded by artists in his family as his mother and grandfather painted. Penix did not pursue painting until after graduating high school. Penix’s mother encouraged him to pursue his talent and took his paintings down to a local gallery where he sold his first piece. Through the years Penix has been inspired by old masters such as Nicolai Fechin, Sargent and the french impressionists, but it has been over the last few years that Penix has been the most influenced by artist Quang Ho. Penix had the opportunity to take a workshop under Mr. Ho and later to study briefly with him. Since then, Penix believes his paintings have grown more in the last two years than his last ten years of painting. As an artist Penix gains inspiration from his environment whether that be at the park, in his home, or traveling abroad. He enjoys the freedom to paint different subject matter and has learned to push himself to try new things, even if they are out of his comfort zone. Penix was recently recognized in South West Art’s “21 Under 31” artist competition in 2010. He continues to paint full time as a professional artist and strives to advance his skill.