David Dalton was born in 1952 in Pontiac, Michigan. He grew up in California's Santa Clara Valley in an artistic environment. His father, renowned artist Lee Truax Dalton, taught David to draw, and he would watch his father paint. As a teenager, David began surfing and developed a love of the Ocean. Because of his surfing experience the ocean became his subject of choice when he began to paint. Dalton graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz, in 1977. During his time as a college student, he would work after class doing artwork on surfboards at the local board manufacturer. Pen and Ink, watercolors or airbrushed acrylics were then sealed under fibreglass and resin to produce surfboards that were works of art.
During a weekend visit to Carmel with his father, David was particularly impressed by the exciting depictions of waves painted by California artist Alexander Dzigurski. With new enthusiasm, David decided to begin painting ocean view in oil. After college, Dalton began teaching during the day, and painting at night. In 1978, he was able to begin painting full time, his work promoted by a prominent Los Angeles art gallery, and has now been showing and selling his work for over three decades. He currently resides with his wife in the small Sierra foothill town of Coarsegold, California.
Dalton's images of the pounding California surf and the spirited motion of the Pacific Ocean are crisp, forceful, and captivating. He has mastered a unique style of brushwork that gives luminosity to his canvases, and a depth of detail that sets his work apart from his contemporaries. His award winning seascapes range from the burning intensity of a California sunset to the haunting moodiness of a silver-cast moon reflecting off ice blue waters.
During the first decade of his paitning career, Dalton specialized in ocean scenes. But, his eye caught the beauty of the classic California landscape and, inspired by James Fetherolf, he began to add scenes of oak shaded barns nestled into gently rolling hillsides, and the grandeur of the National Parks of the West to his selection of favorite subjects. David enjoys traveling the back roads of the West with his camera on the lookout for fitting composition.
Seascape or landscape, Dalton's paintings are characterized by astounding detail. Yet the artist says he is more concerned with composition and the overall effect, rather than just dazzling the viewer with detail. Over the years his award winning paintings have earned him the respect of being named on of California's foremost land and seascape artists.