James Dietz

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Jim Dietz has gained international recognition in aviation art circles for his unique approach to this genre. "The people , settings and costumes are what make aviation history exciting and romantic to me." It is that feeling that makes Jim Dietz and his art work so different from his contemporaries. Rather than simply illustrate aviation hardware, Jim prefers to portray human involvement, to show in his paintings the interaction between man and machine--after all, he says, "it is people who make aircraft great, by design, by flying, and by dedication."

A native of San Francisco, he graduated from Art Center Collage of Design in 1969 and began a successful illustration career in Los Angeles. The subject matter varied from automobiles to action scenes to romantic book covers. A steady flow of work from New York clients enabled Jim and his wife to move to Seattle in 1978, where he began to fulfill his dream of specializing in aviation and military art. His clients have included Boeing, Bell Helicopter, Federal Express, Allison, Flying Tigers and the Indianapolis 500, the National Guard and several U.S. Army associations.

Jim's originals are found in many private collections and museums, including the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, San Diego Air Museum, the Navel Air Museum in Pensacola, Florida and the Aero Replica Fighter Museum, Lake Guntersville, Alabama.

The EAA presented Jim with the title of Master Artist after he won Best of Show in three successful years in the EAA Aviation Art Show. He was awarded the People's Choice Award by his peers at the American Society of Aviation Artists Forum, and received Best of Show in the Franklin Mint Artist Show, Best in Show and three Best of Era awards at the first San Antonio Military Art Show. In 1992, Jim was inducted as a charter member of the World War I Aviation Historical Hall of Fame at Aerodrome '92. He is an Artist Fellow of the American Society of Aviation Artist, and a member of the Automotive Fine Artist of American. Jim is frequently asked to contribute articles to aviation and military history publications.

Jim lives with his wife, Patti, son Ian and his 1969 Morgan sports car. his studio resembles a World War I aviator's bar, filled with flying memorabilia, an old wooden prop and model airplanes (which he builds in his spare time).