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He trained at Scottsdale Artists’ School and at the FBI Academy, in Quantico, Virginia where he studied forensic art and sculpture.
Although this was a vital public service that Neil provided, and he was good at it, this art-form did little for him as a creative artistic outlet. From forensic drawing came Neil’s hidden talent of fine portraiture. It began when a news reporter saw one of Neil’s crime sketches and liked it enough to commission Neil for a portrait. Since then, Neil has done many portrait commissions to include a sizeable commission by The Stokes Collection Art Gallery in Carmel, CA.
The inherent stress of law enforcement and the macabre nature of Forensic Art, caused Shaw to seek a temporary escape from the harsh realities of law enforcement.
Neil began taking trips to Maui and Hawaii where they found their niche. Neil was so inspired by the island lifestyle, rich traditions and marine life that he began painting tropical scenes. Since then, Neil has left law enforcement and is now painting professionally.
In Neil’s earlier years, he was a Humane Officer with the SPCA of Monterey County where, among other duties, he performed cruelty investigations, wildlife and marine mammal rescue, at Monterey Bay. This gave him his appreciation and respect of these amazing creatures. His experience, respect and admiration for animal and marine life manifest itself in Neil’s very-unique bird and dolphin paintings. Neil Shaw’s off-beat imagination and unmistakable painting style creates an artistic fusion unseen anywhere else.
Neil's art is currently a featured in Hawaii, at The Image Station in Kihei, Maui
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