Mr. Rockwell was very encouraging and he told me to get good schooling. That was his best tip. I had a very good High School art teacher who was an artist, herself, in watercolor. She taught me a lot about light and reflections.
I started out in a two-year college in Auburn, NY. Then while trying to transfer to Syracuse, I was drafted. By the time I returned home, I was married with two children and did not think I could return to school to complete my education. After nearly 5 years in a dead-end job, I decided I'd had enough. So with 4 children, now, I returned to school at Syracuse University.
They started me out in freshman core program, where I could have taught the classes, myself. By that time, there was a lot of water under the bridge, and I'd been painting in WC since I was 14. After one semester in freshman core, I moved onto more advanced classes.
I got some very good tutelage while there and experienced a lot. I took three semesters in studying artistic mediums of all sorts. I have made my own oil paint, watercolor, pastels, egg tempera, encaustic, gauche, casein, and cold wax. Not to mention studio courses in figure drawing, head drawing, watercolor and oil painting. All my instructors were very successful artists in their own right.
In addition I took a lot of Art History, and of course, my educational classes. Syracuse University has one of the best art schools around.
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt
Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html