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From the time he was a boy, Michael Blaser  had a fascination with steamboats and Mississippi River History. He started drawing boats at an early age.

Today, Blaser is regarded as one of the finest maritime artists in the country. 

Blaser says the Mississippi River is a connection to his boyhood days when he would see the Lone Star chugging up river. He also enjoys  painting  scenes of steamboats along the Ohio River near Cincinnati.

A history of these boats weaves its way into each painting.

He took classes at the Davenport Art Museum. He works strictly in oil paint. At one time Michael was an illustrator in Chicago.

He says often it is the spotlight that defines the Mississippi River at night. He enjoys sitting along the river and watching the boats and barges during the evening.

One of his paintings depicts the great steamboat race between the Robert E. Lee and the Natchez. Blaser  says he wants people to picture the steamers coming right at them.

Michael Blaser also researches much of the history associated with his art.  Blaser says his favorite painting is always the next one.