Portrait of the Artist

Allison McIntyre

Wildlife, on camera

By Noelani Kirschner | January 15, 2024
Bear, acrylic on panel, 30
Bear, acrylic on panel, 30" x 30".

Growing up, Allison McIntyre learned to love wildlife, especially the deer and moose she saw near her home in Shinnston, West Virginia. After graduating from the Savannah College of Art and Design—where she initially had studied animation, hoping to find work at Disney as an illustrator—McIntyre began to focus her paintings on animals, both wild and domestic. “I was always interested in animals and art,” she says, “and in creating a conversation about the harmful disconnect between humanity and the natural world. How much are you out in nature, touching grass and seeing animals?”


  • Lens, digital sketch, 16" x 12".

McIntyre paints animals as they appear on trail camera footage, “to reference the way we’re viewing nature through screens instead of connecting to nature physically,” she says. Deer’s large, searching eyes appear as blinding white orbs in her paintings, as though illuminated by infrared technology. Bears lumber across the canvas, frozen momentarily by the viewer’s gaze. McIntyre says she was inspired to concentrate on the human relationship to animals—especially those in the wild—after learning at SCAD about the global environmental crisis. She says she wasn’t fully aware of the scope of the threat to the natural world until she got to college. “I wanted to make something meaningful to me, and I found that in these paintings,” she says.

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