Founder - Dru Blair
Dru Blair grew up in Columbia, SC, and began studying medicine at Furman University in Greenville, SC. During his undergraduate studies he discovered his artistic ability and switched majors to fine art in his senior year, graduating with a BA in fine art in 1981. He later found employment in Myrtle Beach, SC as an airbrush artist painting shirts, where his rapid success inspired him to continue his education in art at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. He earned a Masters Degree in fine art in 1984 and went on to begin his career in commercial illustration.
In 1988 he won the National Airbrush Excellence Award, which ushered in a wave of commercial opportunities. The following year he produced his first aviation painting, "Power", which became the first of three Air Force Magazine covers and remains the number one selling aviation print in existence. Other aviation paintings followed the advent of his own publishing company, Blair Art Studios Inc. More recently, he founded the Blair School of Art in Raleigh, NC and now the Blair School of Realism in Blair, SC. He continues selling his commissions and teaching painting workshops at his school and around the world, and is regarded as the top realism painter in the world.
Dru Blair is an Air Force Association Life Member (1989), Honorary Member of the United States Air Force (since 1991), Army Aviation Association of America Life Member (since 1993), member of the North Carolina Association of Designers and Illustrators (since 1989), member of the Air Force Art Program (since 1991), member of the Graphic Artists Guild (since 1993), Artist Fellow member of the American Society of Aviation Artists (since 1994), and board member of the International Airbrush Association. He is a featured lecturer at the World Airbrush Exposition, and was the Guest of Honor at the International Airbrush Forum held in Germany which drew over 10,000 artists from around the world. Dru continues to be featured in television shows and interviews, and on dozens of magazine covers and book publications. Commercial projects have included popular themes such as the Budweiser Bullfrogs. He was the official artist for Star Trek: Voyagear book covers, as well as several of the other Star Trek licensees. Dru currently resides in his ancestral hometown of Blair, SC where he operates the Blair School of Realism.
Partial client list: Budweiser, Continental Airlines, United Airlines, Proctor & Gamble, Pepsi, Coca-Cola, Nabisco, Neutrogena, Rolling Rock Beer, Rockwell International, McDonnell Douglas, McDonalds, Mattel, USA Today, Turner Broadcasting System, Automobile Magazine, American Legion Magazine Airforce Magazine, American Helicopter Pilots Association Magazine, Texaco, Paramount Theme Park, Featured Cover Artist and contributing editor for Airbrush Magazine.