Ludlow resident Don Hofer, who teaches pen & ink, mixed media and painting (acrylic and oil) at Fletcher Farm School for Arts & Crafts also in Ludlow, has worn many hats over the years; fine artist, graphic designer, advertising manager, teacher and even advertising executive.
His art education is extensive, having studied under world renowned artists Ken Davies and Rudolph Zalinger at Paier School of Art & Photography in Hamden, CT.
Hofer graduated from Hamden in 1962, while also studying at Fairfield University (CT) and Southern CT University.
While at Fairfield on a music scholarship, Hofer also spent 10 years training his tenor voice with Maestro Riggio in New Haven, CT.
Don also continued his love of fine art with the creation of Hofer Fine Arts in 1965, pursuing art exhibitions and shows all over New England for his pen and ink drawings, portraits and landscape paintings.
While developing a Fortune 500 graphics and advertising resume over the next 20 years with various CT-based companies such as Sieburg Industries, Wallace Silversmiths and American Chain & Cable Company.
In 1982 Hofer launched Hofer Advertising & Marketing, providing a full service advertising and marketing agency, specializing in the development of magazine ads and trade show design and marketing.
Always drawn to Vermont's natural beauty, Hofer and his wife Joyce moved to Ludlow in 1993, with Don changing the business name of the advertising agency to Graphics Plus, while also continuing to grow as a commissioned fine artist.
"With the varied experience in my past I recognized that the needs of my community were more than rack folders, brochures, logos and other stationery type projects.
"I felt that Graphics Plus would verbally cover more needs such as designing, painting and installing major retail signs. Also producing my various fine art portraits, landscapes, animal pen & ink drawings.
Over the years, Hofer has especially developed a special feel for animals, with the ability to capture their noble qualities with striking detail, most notable through his Fauna Series pen and ink collection.
Don began teaching at Fletcher Farm School in 1994 and found great joy in teaching art to students from many walks of life.
He currently teaches four courses - pen & ink/mixed media, oil painting, acrylic painting and more recently a course in perspective.
"The then director of Fletcher Farm suggested I schedule a class for the coming summer and I really liked the idea. I began with my extensive experience with acrylic painting and later added oil painting. As the years went on we added pen & ink/mixed media to the agenda and more recently, a class on prospective drawing.
"What I have learned from my teaching experience was what a positive delight it was to see people, who had never experienced serious art training before, produce a picture on canvas that they never even dreamed was possible. I honestly began to enjoy that, even more than producing what I knew I was able to accomplish."
Mr. Hofer has also been involved in many organizations and clubs throughout New England including (locally) the Chester Art Guild, West River Art Association, the Ludlow Chamber of Commerce and is currently a Cantor at Annunciation Church in Ludlow.
With Graphics Plus, Don has designed and produced over 40 of Ludlow's business and community signs, is currently working on a book called The Logic Of Logos and has even designed a coin that was produced at the Franklin Mint. Indeed, a man of many hats.
To learn more about Don Hofer and his many artistic outlets, visit fineartamerica.com and go to the artists tab.