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Biography provided courtesy of “California Watercolors 1850-1970” by Gordon T. McClelland and Jay T. Last. Copyright Hillcrest Press, Inc. 2002


Born in Washington, D.C. in 1918. He works extensively in the watercolor format, but has painted in oils and acrylics as well. He specializes in stylistic, abstract geometric renditions. During the 1930's he studied at the University of Alabama. When World War II began he enlisted in the U.S. Army where he became an illustrator in their training department in New Jersey. Shackelford also trained at the Art Students League in New York, and at the Chouinard Institute in Los Angeles. He studied closely with Phil Paradise, James Patrick, and Lawrence Murphy. He is considered one of the strongest proponents of "California Style" watercolor painting.

Prior to World War II he moved to the Southern California area where he worked at the Walt Disney Studios and participated in the production of the animated films, "Bambi" and "Dumbo". He eventually settled in the San Diego, California area where he focused on his fine art career.

A Signature Member of the American Watercolor Society, he exhibited there, and at the National Academy of Design, the National Watercolor Society, the San Diego Museum of Art, the Butler Art Institute in Ohio, the Audubon Artists in New York, the Royal Watercolor Society in London, and at the Knowles Gallery in La Jolla, California.

Shackelford was a member of the American Watercolor Society, National Watercolor Society, California Watercolor Society, Artist's Guild of the San Diego Museum of Art, and the San Diego Watercolor Society. He was the President of the San Diego Watercolor Society in the late 1960's, and served as a Director of the San Diego Artist's Guild in the 1970's.

Shackelford spent time as an instructor and workshop Director in many venues ...including the American Watercolor Society Annual, the National Academy of Design, American Artist Magazine, and at local Watercolor Society's throughout the U.S. He is also the author of the books "As I See It" (1942), "Fun With Watercolor" (1978), "Experimental Watercolor Techniques" (1980), and "Draw Animals" (1992).

In 1989 Shackelford was living in El Cajon, California. In October of 2001 he moved from his long time home in Escondido, California to "semi retirement" in Mobile, Alabama.