While a student at Michigan State University, Bonnie Marris illustrated several books, including a mammalogy text by a leading expert in the field. The book attracted the attention of noted zoologist George Schaller, who invited Marris to prepare the art for posters to support his worldwide rare-animal relief programs.
Beyond academic training and emotional involvement lies that element for which there is no substitute: experience. Marris makes several field trips each year to study the animals that are the subjects of her paintings. This close proximity with the animals gives her the confidence to paint them with total realism in their natural surroundings. Marris’ work is highly sought after and can be found in many major collections throughout the country.
At the Masters of the American West, she won the Patrons’ Choice Award for her painting Trouble in 2016; the Bob Kuhn Wildlife Award sponsored by Carl and Rosella Thorne, the Ross and Billie McKnight Artists’ Choice Award, in Honor of John J. Geraghty, and the Marjorie and Frank Sands Patrons’ Choice Award for Ice Princess in 2014; and the Patrons’ Choice Award for Social Viewpoints in 2012. At the Coeur d’Alene Art Auction, she won the People’s Choice Award in 2011 and the Patrons’ Choice Award in 2010.
She and her husband Woody live on a farm in Ada, Michigan, with two dogs and three horses.
Bonnie Marris is represented by Broadmoor Galleries, Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Trailside Galleries, Jackson, Wyoming, and Scottsdale, Arizona.