Ryan S. Brown was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. He studied Illustration at Brigham Young University graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2002. While finishing his studies at BYU, Ryan became aware of the deficiencies in his University education. Because his interests were in the academic and naturalist traditions of the nineteenth century, it became necessary for him to get the foundational drawing and painting training not offered at the university. In his senior year at BYU, Ryan began studying with William Whitaker, a renowned portrait and figurative painter. Soon after this, Ryan entered the Florence Academy of Art, where he received his first taste of Academic training. The organized, intense and concise training of the Florence Academy provided Ryan with what he considers the beginning of his understanding of the craft of art. This training not only gave Ryan a deep understanding and love of drawing, but also developed in him a strong self-discipline and work ethic, as well as an insatiable appetite for learning.
After only 6 months at the academy, Ryan ran out of money and had to return to Utah. Ryan began creating works for galleries and between 2003 and 2006 he taught at BYU, UVU, and workshops at LAAFA. In January, 2007 Ryan, his wife and three kids moved back to Florence in order to finish his studies at the Florence Academy of Art. He graduated from the FAA in 2008 winning ‘Painting of the Year’.
Ryan is living and working again in Utah and has established the Center for Academic Study and Naturalist Painting (CAS). He hopes to move the CAS to Paris by 2015 and establish a larger version of the school there.
Ryan was the top award winner of the John F. and Anna Lee Stacey scholarship in 2004. He also received third place in the Art Renewal Scholarship competition in 2005. In 2006 Ryan was one of ten artists to be invited by American Artist Magazine to the Forbes Trinchera Ranch for a nine day retreat that was followed by a special article in the magazine and a showing of these select artist’s works at the Forbes Gallery in New York in March, 2007. Ryan was also accepted into the Hudson River School for Landscape in its inaugural year, which he attended in the summer of 2007. In 2007 Ryan also won Fourth Place in the Art Renewal Center Scholarship Competition. Ryan was featured in the May, 2008 issue of Southwest Art as “A Rising Artist to Watch." Ryan won the “Best Painting of the Year” at the Florence Academy of Art in 2008.