Tooby Burton, Former Artist in Residence,
Old Faithful Inn
Photo  Guy Markley
(right) Print, reproduced
from 1983 watercolor
by Tooby Burton. This
painting represents the
Old Faithful Inn as it
looked soon after
opening in 1904. The
shingles had not yet
been stained, and the
roof was red, as
depicted in this
painting.
IF YOU VISITED or worked
at the Old Faithful Inn in
the early to mid 1980s,
you probably remember
artist Tooby Burton. Mr.
Burton and his wife had
been employees of the
park before he set up his
small artist's work area in
the corner of the lobby.
Before coming to
Yellowstone, Burton, a
native of Rigby, Idaho,
served in the Army and
later studied art in Los
Angeles. His years as an
artist included involvement
in commercial art and
illustration as well as
teaching classes in
painting.
Tooby Burton, pictured here, was the Old Faithful Inn's "Artist in Residence"
during much of the 1980s. Each of his paintings was original, and in most
cases not duplicated as prints. This photograph was taken in June 1984.
 At the Old Faithful Inn, Tooby Burton
painted primarily in watercolors, a
medium he termed "a sort of romantic
realism." His paintings were done
during the day and often well into the
evening as tourists passed by to watch
or talk. Though he painted a range of
Yellowstone subjects from animals to
thermal features to park outhouses,
two of his favorite subjects were the
Old Faithful Inn and Old Faithful
Geyser. He often reflected events of the
day in his paintings:  When, in 1982,
the Old Faithful Inn had just been
reshingled and not yet stained its
usual dark brown color, his paintings
of the Inn showed unstained siding
(see below). If clouds on a particular
day were large and dark, that might
well be how they appeared in his
paintings that day. Though he had
painted Old Faithful countless times,
Burton still on occasion ran outside to
see the geyser in action and observe
some previously unnoticed detail.
10X14 watercolor of the Old Faithful Inn, 1982
Photo  F. Markley
5X7 watercolor of the Old Faithful Inn, Aug 1982
Photo  Guy Markley
(left) 10X14 watercolor of the
Old Faithful Inn, Aug. 1982
Photo  Guy Markley
(left) 10X14 watercolor of the
Old Faithful Inn and Geyser,
1984
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