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Though born and raised in southern California, it was her early European travels that greatly inspired C.M. Cooper's artistic pursuits, along with the great fortune to live and paint in Paris for a period of time. After acquiring a Bachelor Degree in Psychology and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, she followed a career in advertising as a fashion layout artist, as well as freelancing as an editorial illustrator. Her continued education included an advanced standing in the Masters Program at Associates in Art, and nearly four years of studies with Joseph Mendez.
She feels that she has been blessed to have had the opportunity to observe the painting methods of many highly respected artists including Howard Terpning in a one-time-only-offered Masters Class, and more recently, Raymond Everett Kinstler.
After six years of teaching art, which included running an art school for budding young artists, Cooper now dedicates most of her energy to painting for the galleries that currently represent her. She refers to herself as a 'contemporary traditionalist,' painting traditional subject matter but, often in a contemporary, alla prima style. Her work has won numerous awards including The Museum Director's Choice Award at the prestigious California Art Club's 92nd Annual Gold Medal Juried Exhibition 2002. She was a featured artist in Southwest Magazines Figurative Issue November 2003 and was selected as an "Artist to Watch" in their November 2002 issue.
Other publications include International Artist Magazine - 100 Ways to Paint People and Your Favorite Subject published 2003, 2004. Cooper participates in various annual exhibitions sponsored by the art organizations to which she belongs.
C.M. Cooper is a member of many prestigious nationally recognized Art Organizations, including The American Artists Professional League in New York, The Oil Painters of America, The American Society of Portrait Artists, and she is an Artist Member of The California Art Club.
She calls herself a "Contemporary Traditionalist" and is best known for her paintings of ballerina dancers, lounging women and sleeping children which have been granted various awards. Ms. Cooper was just awarded by one of our nations most respected portrait artists, Everett Raymond Kinstler, one of the top prizes - third best in show at the 2010 Salon International Show. C. M. Cooper is currently represented by several galleries nationwide and her work is held in many private collections in the US.