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Jim Strong has taught oil painting at Gila Community College for the past seven years.

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Artist helps his students paint what they see

After a lifetime of practicing art, Jim Strong paints what he sees. Even then, the subject doesn’t always agree with his vision. Strong related one example of the viewer’s subjectivity of art: Andy Towle, Roundup staff photographer snapped a memorable photo of a cowboy in the Payson Rodeo parade one year. Strong, intrigued by Towle’s photo, asked if he could use it as a model for a painting. “He was a great face,” said Strong. Towle gave him the photo. The finished piece pleased Strong. “That is one of my better paintings,” said Strong. Strong showed the painting in various shows, always giving Towle credit for the photo, but neither he nor Towle knew the identity of the cowboy.

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