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Joy Thomas authored the book, The Art of Portrait Drawing, published in 2006 by North Light Books. She received the 1996 First Place Prize for Portrait Painting from the American Society of Portrait Artists. In 1998, she traveled to Sydney, Australia to accept the Honorary Lifetime Achievement Award from the Australian Society of Portrait Artists. Her paintings have been selected for many juried shows, including the historic Salmagundi Club and the National Arts Club of New York City where she has garnered numerous awards. 

Joy Thomas has completed many portrait commissions for leaders of business, government, academia and finance.  She painted the official portrait of the Secretary of the Navy, Richard Danzig. It was unveiled in 2001 and is in the permanent collection of the Pentagon. Her portrait of the Secretary of the Navy was featured on the front page of the Washington Post on October 21, 2009.  Thomas traveled to New York City in 2004 to paint Robert Wood Johnson, philanthropist and owner of the New York Jets. Joy Thomas was selected to paint the official portrait of the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard; the painting was unveiled in Washington D.C. in 2006. In 2010 she completed two official portraits of Chief Federal Judge Thomas B. Russell, for the Gene Snyder U.S. Courthouse of Louisville and the Federal Courthouse of Paducah, both in Kentucky. In 2012, she unveiled the official portrait of Steven Beshear, the 61st Governor of Kentucky. In 2012 Thomas was awarded the contract to paint the official portrait of the U.S. Secretary Of Commerce, John Bryson, the completed painting is in the Herbert C. Hoover Building, headquarters of the U.S. Department of Commerce in Washington D.C.

Joy Thomas won the first place prize in the “The Best Paintings of 2000” competition, sponsored by The Artist’s Magazine; the winning painting was selected from among 13,800 entries.  Her career has been featured in American Artist magazine (Nov. 1996), The Artist’s Magazine (April 1997), International Artist magazine (January 1999), and in the following books; The Best of Portrait Painting by North Light Books, Portrait Highlights published by Watson-Gupthill and Low Country Plantations Today by Legacy Publications. She is the author of The Art of Portrait Drawing published in 2006 by F&W Publishing, Cincinnati, Ohio and has been the featured artist of numerous instructional DVDs.

A fine arts major at Murray State University; Thomas continued her training at the Lyme Academy College of Fine Art in Connecticut, The Loveland Academy of Fine Arts in Colorado and the Fechin Institute of New Mexico.  Thomas also received merit scholarships from the Pastel Society of America and the Scottsdale Gallery Association to study at the Woodstock School of Art in New York and the Scottsdale Artist’s School in Arizona

Joy Thomas has served as guest artist/instructor for the Minnesota River School of Fine Arts, the Loveland Academy of Fine Arts in Colorado, the Dallas Association of Creative Artists, the St. Louis Artist’s Guild, the Cincinnati Art Club and the Australian Society of Portrait Artists in Sydney.

She lives and works with her husband, master frame maker, Fredrick Thomas. Fred designs and creates museum quality frames, specializing in gold and silver leafing. They have three grown children and four grandchildren.  They live in Murray, Kentucky.

  P.O. Box 11     Murray, Kentucky  42071     270-227-1913

  2012 ArtistsNetwork.tv Interview with Joy Thomas

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