Chris Peterson, Illustrator




Christopher Peterson’s inspiration comes from several sources. The first is from the subjects themselves. Using the traditional skills of drawing and painting, he can observe and express not only the physical thing, but also the emotion in any given subject. Technically, any subject can be a beautiful opportunity to use paint, color and value to express the mulitude of effects that light, refection, shadow and cast shadow have on a subject.


His artistic inspiration comes from a tradition of American painting beginning with artists like N.C. and Andrew Wyeth, Charles Sheeler, Edward Hopper, John Singer Sargeant and Winslow Homer. His more contemporary influences are from artists such as Wayne Thiebaud, Chuck Close, Robert Cunningham, John Register and Richard Estes. He has always been fundamentally an illustrator though, and accordingly, has been influenced by such artists as Norman Rockwell, Milton Glaser, and James McMullan, but feels that it is important to be very discerning when choosing one’s artistic influences and prefers the traditional American realist painters.


He was born in New York City May 26, 1957, and grew up in Westport, Connecticut. His father was a salesman, and his mother was a clothing designer. Like many boys who grew up in the suburbs during the sixties, his earliest influences were The Beatles, The Monkees, Rolling Stones, Walt Disney, Norman Rockwell, Peter Max and Andy Warhol.


After a moderately idyllic childhood, he went to art school in Boston, and then at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. He began his career as an Illustrator in New York City in 1980, and immediately started working for The New York Times and Time magazine. Since moving to the Bay area in 1984, he has been a steady fixture in the landscape of art and design, working in newspapers, advertising, exhibit design, teaching, and as a painter and illustrator. Click here to see paintings by Christopher Peterson. Click here to see Rock posters by Christopher Peterson


He has been published in the Los Angeles Society of illustrators 35 and five times in Print magazine’s regional design annual. In 1995, he won the bronze medal for advertising in the San Francisco society of illustrators show, in1996 he won gold, silver, and bronze medals in the San Francisco society of illustrators show. In 1999 his poster for John Lee Hooker at the Fillmore won the gold medal for advertising at the San Francisco society of illustrators annual show, and was selected in the 41st New York society of illustrators show. In fact, he’s taken the gold medal for advertising four years in a row in the SFSI show. He is in the US Air Force Art program and his client list includes The New York Times, Time magazine, Fortune, Readers Digest, Watson-Guptil books, Bill Graham Presents, The String Cheese Incident, Metropolitan Entertainment, Pacific Bell, Nickelodeon, Buick, Duracell, Heineken, Goodby Silverstein, McCann-Erickson advertising, Citigate, Macy’s, Marketing Drive USA, Ogilvy & Mather, Arnold Worldwide, Dave Matthews Band and Phish.


• Member, Society of Illustrators, New York
• President Emeritus, San Francisco Society of Illustrators- member since 1995
• Member, US Air Force Art program


• Oakland Museum Collectors’ Gallery
• Art Concepts Gallery, Walnut Creek, CA.
• Epperson gallery, Crockett, CA
• Start SOMA gallery, San Francisco
• Dimitroff gallery, Mill Valley, CA


• Bronze medal, San Francisco Society of Illustrators 1994
• Bronze medal, San Francisco Society of Illustrators 1995
• Gold, Silver & Bronze medal, San Francisco Society of Illustrators 1996
• Honorable mention, Los Angeles Society of Illustrators, 1998
• Gold medal, San Francisco Society of Illustrators 1999
• Honorable mention, New York Society of Illustrators, 1999
• Gold, Bronze medal, San Francisco Society of Illustrators 2000
• Gold medal, San Francisco Society of Illustrators 2001


• Illustrators Bedford Gallery, Walnut Creek
• San Francisco Society of illustrators annual show 1995, 96, 97, 98, 99, 00, 01, 02
• East Bay open studios 1997, 98, 99, 00, 01
• New York Society of Illustrators 42nd annual exhibition, 1999
• One-man show- Crème de La Crème, Oakland
• One-man show- California Café, Walnut Creek, CA.
• One-man show- Gordon’s house of Fine eats (2002)
• One-man show- Metropolitan Transportation Commission, Oakland (2002)
• One-man show- Addison Street windows, Berkeley (2003)
• One-man show- Dimitroff Gallery, Mill Valley, CA (2004)


Pepsi • Heineken • Duracell • Time Magazine • The New York Times • The San Francisco Chronicle • Mix Magazine • Readers Digest • Golf Digest • Nickelodeon • Consumer Reports • McGraw-Hill • Macy’s • Courvoisier • Citigate Albert Frank • Watson- Guptil • Warner Brothers • Joe Boxer • Bozell • Citron Haligman Bedecarre • Mindscape • Goodby Silverstein & Partners • Info World • Travers Collins Partners • Krichoff/Wohlberg, Inc. • The Bark! Magazine • Brand Fusion • Foote, Cone Belding • Deutsch Advertising • Bill Graham Presents • KNBR & KFOG Radio • Sutter Home Wines • Phish • The String Cheese Incident • High Sierra Music Festival • Bannaroo Music festival • The Floating Company • Stufish • Legendary Rhythm and Blues Cruise • Monterey Bay Aquarium

Click here to contact Christopher.

Click here to visit Christopher’s Paintings