Charles Shortridge, the artist may be more familiar
to you as an actor. For fifteen years he has sold you such products
as Mennen, Speedstick, Coke, Certs, and Head and Shoulders to
name just a few of the over fifty TV commercials he's done. Theatrically
he has starred as a series regular in "Welcome Back Kotter"
as the southern sweathog 'Beau' and co-starred with Debbie Reynolds
on the ABC show "Aloha Paradise". He spent the year
of 1987 playing the role of David Reed as part of the original
cast on the CBS daytime soap opera "The Bold and the Beautiful".
It was after this role that Stephen set his priorities toward
business and finally to pursue his love of art.
Stephen enjoyed acting but found painting much more creatively
satisfying and explains, "...the feeling of being totally
free to create as an artist is exciting to me. In acting a large
part of the creative process had taken place by the time I was
involved. The writer, director, and producer had already made
many decisions about the character I would play. In contrast,
painting gives me complete control. I may race along in a painting
and have a disaster on my hands or something I'm proud of...but,
I make the choices and accept the consequences good or bad. That's
freedom...it's precious and the most fulfilling part of being
an artist to me."
Born in Iowa and raised in Southern California Stephen excelled
in art throughout his schooling but had mainly studied commercial
art. He took his first painting class while attending Idaho State
University on a Water Polo Scholarship (Stephen was an All-American).
Without formal training, the French Impressionists became his
teacher, Monet in particular. Preferring full colors and bold
painting strokes Stephen has established his own aggressive style.
Amongst Stephen's collector are celebrities Patty Duke, Donna
Summer, and Rick Dees. Also while living in the LA area Stephen
exhibited with a fellow actor/artists including accomplished artist
"...As a final note I do have great fun painting! I thank
God for everything, the least of which is to be creative and to
paraphrase a famous line from "Chariots of Fire", "when
I paint I feel His pleasure."