Born in the California Bay Area, he became interested in art and music early on. At age five he started piano and still plays for enjoyment and relaxation. It was his high school art teacher Winifred Lane who took a special interest in Craig supplying him with encouragement, extra painting supplies for the summer and organizing shows of his work. Coming home after summer vacation he found a check for the purchase of ten painting he had done that year—that was a defining moment. While pursuing studies in art and science at East Bay University California he was divided—Art or Science . But over coffee with a biology professor he was asked—"Craig I saw your art displayed here on campus—nice work. What are you doing here in Biology?" Another defining moment . . . Craig completed a BA in Art, left for Europe for four months traveled 14 countries and saw works by the great masters—Michelangelo, Da Vinci, Botticelli, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, Sargent, Joaquin Sorolla to name a few and decided he needed to continue his studies graduating art school earning a MA in Fine Art from San Jose State University. While working on his MA in Fine Art, Craig noticed he loved helping and encouraging others. Thus a career including art instruction was born. A busy schedule balancing college teaching, maintaining an active painting studio, running a small gallery in Mountain View California and exhibiting his paintings in national & international competitions occupied his time. Craig has received numerous awards, exhibited in galleries and museums from east to west coast. His art is in private collections in Europe, Japan and the US.
In 1982 he left the Bay Area, headed north to Seattle and founded Northwest College Of Art & Design / NCAD West of Seattle in a beautiful water front community of Poulsbo, Washington. Today NCAD is surrounded by a nearly 30 acre campus - once the private estate of a wealthy textile mill owner in Glasgow Scotland. NCAD is a private degree granting institution accredited by ACCSC. Offering a BFA Degree with 9 double major options including Illustration, Graphic Design, Motion Design, Interactive Design, Photography and Entertainment Art. The campus includes: a completely restored Manor House, 2 buildings designed and built with the artist in mind, gardens all with a view of Liberty Bay and Olympic Mountains. Faculty and staff are focused on the NCAD philosophy that Art is a Passion and a Business.
Craig is not only the founder and president of NCAD but is a national speaker on the arts, visiting high schools thoughout the US to inspiring young emerging artist and the youth to follow their passion in the arts. Visit the NCAD website at http://www.ncad.edu
Craig also has founded the Cultural Arts Foundation Northwest—a non profit organization supporting the arts in the northwest, Atelier Arts Supply, The Freeman Gallery, Co-Founder of West Sound Academy in Poulsbo—a private not for profit High School / Junior High with emphasis on the arts on their own 20 acre campus. He has served on the board of directors for Washington State Vocational Education, elected twice as President of ICDS International Council of Design Schools and is an advisor to IMC-Island Music Center on Bainbridge Island Washington.
After raising three children, Minna, Matti and Mikko Craig now lives in Kauai, Hawaii keeping an active painting schedule. Continuing as president of NCAD / Northwest College Of Art & Design leading his unique award winning college of art to the next level with new art programs supporting current market demands. He is invited to lecture throughout the US, judge community art exhibits and is an active Plein Air painter with a studio in Hawaii. You will usually find Craig out in the field painting water genre, landscapes and portraits. Favorite Plein Air painting places—Hawaii, Northwest, California, Spain, Lake Como, Tuscany, Cirque Terre and Florence Italy, Turkey and Turquoise Coast.