Don Dattler was born in Syracuse New York. Taking a keen interest in art at a early age, he was inspired to draw and paint the landscapes of the Central New York region of Upstate New York . He had the opportunity to have one of the very best fine Art teachers during high school (George Benedict, a great Artist in his own right), and through his influence began to polish his painting style from an early age. After working for 9 years in the Restaurant Business (as a Chef and in Restaurant Management), Don decided to go back to school for Fine Art and Photography, at Onondaga Community College. Art school was later interrupted do to an Illness. It didn't stop him from doing his Art and Photography. At 25 he took a Job as a New York State Trooper Knowing that it offered a 20 yr pension, at 45 years old, he could Follow his Art dreams unencumbered while still having an income (Pension). During that period, he owned several small businesses, including a Water Garden (backyard Ponds) installation business, a Graphic Design Business, and a computer Manufacturing and repair company. He never stopped painting and stayed in close contact with his High School Art Teacher, meeting about once a week to paint. During yearly trips throughout the USA and Canada, Don shot and compiled a large collection Photos for later use in his Artwork. Upon Retiring from New York State employment, shortly after 911 (Where he spent most of 5 months on special Details related to the 911 Terror Attacks), Don Opened an Art Gallery (Wildlife Arts) in Central New York. It featured Art by Artists from all over New York. He taught classes in art and portrait drawing. His own Art and Photography concentrated on his favorite subject, Wildlife and Nature.
In 2004 He moved to Punta Gorda Florida and displayed his work in local Galleries, while spending several hours each week, doing art and taking wildlife Photos. He volunteered at Alligator Creek nature center during that period, where he took on an even keener Knowledge and interest in Florida's Wildlife and ecosystems. Then In August of 2004 Hurricane Charlie, Destroyed his home. He moved back to New York, and continued his Art and Photography there, while installing small Backyard Ponds for area Clients for extra income. He opened another Gallery in Weedsport, New York for a couple of years, from 2010-2012. Most of his Gallery income was from his art sales and Custom Picture Framing.
At the end of 2012 He moved back to Florida, and settled in the St Petersburg area, on the Gulf coast. St Petersburg was/is becoming one of the Nations Best Fine Art Capitals. He did several Private Art shows in the area, and displayed in Local Galleries. A weekly Plein Air trip to one of his Favorite locations, Fort Desoto Park, often resulted in the sale of his completed Plein Air works. Customers ranged from local residents to Visitors from Canada, Europe and Asia, who might be visiting the area on vacation and business.
Don still teaches art Privately and Enjoys his Plein Air trips to local seaside locations. One of his current Art endeavors includes a Series of Moonlight seascapes, entitled "A Light In The darkness". The Series is representative of an Improving relationship with the World around us. Many of the Series Works include local Wildlife, from Photos that he has taken.
Don Dattler, Wildlife Artist and Photographer
Don Dattler, from the Peak of Whiteface Mt. with Lake Placid in the background!