The eyes of my horses feel like windows to my soul.
The cultural values, and faith instilled throughout his Amish upbringing are all direct influences in the refined pencil work of Andy Mast. Realizing his passion for drawing at an early age, he honed his artistic skills, drawing deep into the night under lantern light following long days on the family farm. Longing for a mentor and craving constructive critique, his hard work and intense passion for creating art, from simple moments in life, quickly became a catalyst for maturing as a professional artist despite his exposure to formal training. At the young age of 17, tragedy struck Mast, when suffering a horse related traumatic brain injury that plunged him into a five-year journey engulfed by overwhelming disability and darkness. Through this dibilitating time, drawing became his sanctuary. His innate "God Given" talent became a refuge allowing him to express his despair, yet experience hope beyond it. Despite this challenging journey, Mast continually strives to communicate emotionally, through the language of art, evoking courage, peace, hope, and healing through his exceptional artwork.
An internationally recognized pencil artist, Mast, established his career earning numerous awards, publications, and exhibitions in prestigious venues of western art. Notably, two-time best pencil award at the Western Spirit Art Show, recently featured in a personal article by American cowboy icon Kent Rollins, features by Uni-ball pen company. Publication highlights include Western Art Collector, Cowboys, and Indians, Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association, magazine cover two times. Painting World Magazine, Western Art and Architecture, April 2023. Career achievement exhibitions include Night Lights Denver historic clock tower projection; pioneering this modern art presentation, as the first western pencil artist digitally projected over downtown Denver during the National Western Stockshow, in January 2023. He has also been invited to multiple exhibitions at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, Small Works Great Wonders, Art Show & Sale, in Oklahoma City, as well as, the Old West Museum, Cheyenne Frontier Days art show, Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Drawing feels like a part of me. I have been drawing all my life. Picking up my pencil brings me peace. Quietness is beautiful. Quietness is when the body rejuvenates and heals. In quiet meditation I draw best.
In today’s fast – paced modern world, it’s the ‘small and simple ‘things that inspire me. I hope that my drawings remind people of the beauty all around us and of a simpler time. It is my desire that my work may cause the viewer to pause and reflect, and therefore be spiritually or emotionally refreshed with a sense of peace. It is my wish that my work may bring hope to people and bring them closer to their own inner quietness.
I draw with pencils because they are simple and straightforward. It’s just the pencil paper and I. There is an unexplained kinship that I feel with the simplicity of my pencil. It is a very common tool everyone has used before and can relate to. The raw reality of the media is much like my lifestyle.
I hope it’s obvious to my viewers that I do not draw for Romance or Fantasy. I have been around horses my whole life and draw from real life experiences. Horses are a part of me. I draw what I know, what I Love and what’s in my heart. It is my passion that comes from the point of my pencil. I strive for a sense of harmony in my drawings by using light to express some form of spirituality or Godliness. The horses, animals and figures I represent are personal reflections . . . symbolic of my emotions . . . in which I conscientiously create their postures, facial expressions and the light in their eyes.