STEPHEN BACH Bach was always artistic as a child but didn’t begin painting until after enrolling in Pratt Institute in New York. Growing up in Orlando, FL, Bach recalls having never been to a real art museum or to a proper art gallery. New York was Bach’s first exposure to the art world. Bach recalls being so inspired by New York it eventually resulted in him changing his major from industrial design to painting and illustration.
At Pratt Bach met his wife Susan who was a ceramic artist and education major. After leaving Pratt, they were married and moved back to Florida to pursue parallel careers as artists.
Initially Bach worked as a freelance illustrator for advertising agencies with occasional editorial illustration assignments. In 1985 Bach was given an opportunity to paint a wall mural in an Italian restaurant. That client, he soon learned, was General Mills which was quietly starting the restaurant chain, Olive Garden. This assignment turned into a fifteen year long project where Bach hand painted murals and acted as a design consultant for over five hundred subsequent restaurants in forty eight states. It was a task that helped him to learn the discipline and work ethic needed to be a successful artist.
Bach made an effort to travel, and those explorations provided him with lots of inspiration for painting landscapes and capturing the wonders of light. In 2000 Bach committed himself solely to fine art painting. It has been the most fulfilling facet of his artistic journey. Along the way Bach has experimented with plein air painting, urban subjects, and night imagery.
Throughout Their careers, Bach and Susan have helped organize and operate an art studio collective called McRae Studios in Orlando. Approximately 25 artists work from there. He states “It’s been satisfying being part of an effort that provides artists a place to create and be recognized. We’ve also learned how often this basic creative component is missing in other communities.”

Oil on Canvas
40 X 40 in