As a watercolorist, Homer Hacker, 92, of Kettering has received countless awards and honors during his career. His watercolors are found in homes and galleries throughout the Miami Valley and the nation.
In 2007, Hacker was given the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Montgomery County Cultural District.
As a young man in Dayton, he studied at the former art school of the Dayton Art Institute on Saturday mornings. Later he earned a degree in art from Ohio University.
“It was the Great Depression and I was sure to get the degree in commercial art so I could make a living,” said Hacker, who spent the next 20 years at the Dayton Daily News rising to the position of chief photographer. This career was followed by 21 years as creative director at Top Value Stamps.
“By that time I was married to my Lydia and we had three sons,” Hacker said. “In 1980, I retired from the corporate world and began painting seriously.”
His watercolors, mainly portraits and landscapes, prompted about 30 one-man shows in principal cities throughout the United States coupled with workshops. Closer to home, he held workshops at studios in Middletown, Cleveland and Columbus.
As a member, his watercolors earned many awards through the Ohio Watercolor Society.
Recently, Hacker’s latest watercolor titled “Ferrytales” was selected by the Salmagundi Society of the American Watercolor International as one of 40 paintings to travel to galleries and universities through the United States for a year.
“It was quite an honor. I went to New York to receive a medal and $500 and a banquet at the Salmagundi Society’s Fifth Avenue brownstone. The Society dates back to 1871,” said Hacker.
“My 20-by-15 watercolor is a study of people waiting for the ferry at Friday Harbor on an island off San Juan Bay in the state of Washington. There’s always the possibility that someone may buy it at some stop on its journey.”
Hacker’s talent was inherited from his father, the late Owen Hacker, a designer of labels and seals for a Dayton company. All three of Homer Hacker’s sons are pursuing careers demanding artistic creativity.
Contact this columnist at (937) 433-1552 or adeleauk4737@sbc global.net.