“Mountain men were trappers and traders drawn to the West in the 1800’s by high prices paid for furs. As a young boy, IO, like many others, dreamt of their care free life, but in actuality, it was an extremely dangerous and difficult life. Many survived alone under trying circumstances, facing constant danger from the elements, animals, and Native Americans.” "Best Sculpture" Award, 2016, Sioux Falls Sculpture Walk, Sioux Falls, SD.
Jerry McKellar received his DDS degree from the University of Washington in 1969 andthen spent two years working in the army dental corps. He and his wife, Gayle, moved to Colville, a small town in scenic NE Washington state, in the fall of 1971 where Jerry practiced dentistry in a busy private practice until his retirement in October of 1994.
Throughout his dental career, he made beautiful jewelry for family and friends, and for a period of time did very finely detailed wildlife scratch drawings which were made into limited edition prints. In 1987 his first limited edition bronze, "Startled", was cast and he unknowingly launched himself from a hobby into a new and exciting career!
Although his sculptures vary widely in style and subject matter, and range from miniature to monumental, strong composition, power, and movement are consistent throughout. His professional background as a dentist is reflected in the structural accuracy of the facial anatomy in his busts and figures. The human figures focus on an accurate depiction of the culture, ritual, or tribal affiliation. The McKellars spend many weeks each year traveling in different parts of the world doing photographic studies which inspire future work.
He does a great deal of his own patina work at his studio and is constantly developing new techniques such as his varied stone marbleized patinas.