Bill Braden was born in Tokyo, Japan in 1958. He moved to Hawaii 1970. Bill studied at the Royal Academy of Arts in London in 1976 and received a BA from the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence Rhode Island and Rome, Italy in 1980. Even though Bill studied at these top art schools he feels it was painting on location in Hawaii that gave him the real applied experience he needed to be a land and seascape artist. His first exhibition was called "Lanikai Perspective" at Kailua Gallery in 1978.
Bill was selected from over 200 applicants to paint “The Best Beaches of Hawaii” for the City and County of Honolulu in 1990. He credits his experience being one of a handful of artist at Wyland Galleries Hawaii (out of thousands of applicants) in the 90's as the best business schooling ever. His work can be seen at the gift shops of the Honolulu Academy of Arts and Bishop Museum in Honolulun s well as in many other gift shops and galleries all over the state of Hawaii.
Since 1984, Bill has created art with a more international appeal than his land and seascapes of Hawaii. He calls it his “Reef/Water Series.” The series is much like Claude Monet’s “Water Lily Series” but of strictly reef and water. By excluding the horizon, the work becomes a more “modern format.” Clients from Europe, N.Y., California, Japan, and many other places have these works and say that these paintings have a calming peaceful effect on them. Braden has recently enjoyed taking cruises to various parts of the world and has found his time at sea has been inspirational, taking his series to even a higher level.
Braden's commissioned work has ranged from the largest stretched canvas painting (15' by 22') in the state of Hawaii (Hilton Waikaloa, Grand Ballroom) to images 5" by 7" notecards (Island Heritage Publishing since 1995). There have been 50' long paintings for lobbies of Waikiki high-rise apartment buildings (Liliuokalani Gardens) to paintings and designs for the Catholic Church (St. Pius X, Manoa). Some other interesting commissions Bill has had includes an oil piece hanging in a condo building, KAHALA2, in Kawasaki, Japan ( this is the 5th commission by this particular client in Japan). Bill has other originals hanging in various hotels and condo lobbies, a state park (giclee due to the artwork being expose to the elements), restaurants, the Honolulu Police Station, and many private homes in Hawaii, the mainland and through out the world.
Braden's talent is also seen in his sculpture. Some of his sculpture commissions include the 300th Anniversary Committee of the town of Harwich Massachusetts (3 1/2 ton marble sculpture of a now demolished building) to the Kupuna (Hawaiian Elders) of the North Shore (100 ton natural stone monument sculpture at the entrance to Waimea Valley). Themes for commissions vary from "Helping the Needy" (10' galvanized steel relief entrance niche sculpture for St John Vianney's Catholic Church in Kailua).