TIMEPieces
Rainbow Builders by Tim O'Brien
September 22, 2021 8:32 AM EDT

Tim O’Brien creates intricately detailed illustrations and portraits from his Brooklyn studio. His paintings have appeared numerous times on the cover of TIME, painting more TIME covers than anyone else in the past 30 years. He has also been an educator for 30 years and is currently an adjunct professor at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. O’Brien invited Sarah Kanu to TIMEPieces.

Artist Statement

Title: Rainbow Builders

This work represents the hard, dirty, work of building a better, brighter future. It takes time, coordination, but the beautiful results make the effort worth the struggle. Original piece is a 12” x 12” oil painting on panel.

About the Artist

Tim O’Brien has illustrated the covers of many other magazines since the start of his career in 1987. Other clients include most prominent book publishers and notably the Hunger Games series for Scholastic. O’Brien has illustrated several US Postage Stamps. O’Brien has received awards from the Society of Illustrators in New York and Los Angeles, Graphis, CA Magazine, the Society of Publication Designers, and American Illustration. Recently, the Art Directors Club awarded O’Brien a bronze, silver, and gold award for his trio of Donald Trump TIME covers. Several of O’Brien’s paintings are in the National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC. He was awarded the 2009 Hamilton King Award from the Society of Illustrators. O’Brien received an honorary doctorate from Lyme Academy of Fine Art in 2013.

O’Brien is the current president of The Society of Illustrators. His numerous speaking engagements include The United Nations, BYU, The Norman Rockwell Museum, The Society of Illustrators, Syracuse University, SVA, Pratt, RISD, CCA, Western Connecticut State University, College of Creative Studies, MICA, and the University of the Arts. Tim has been an educator for 30 years and is currently an adjunct professor at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.

@obrienillustration | @tonkaobrien | obrienillustration.com

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