Thomas Faulkner was born July 1956 in Portland, Oregon. He could draw exceptionally well from a very early age and received encouragement from his mother, also a talented artist. From his earliest years, Thomas recounted his struggle with an irreconcilable conflict between his interests in art and science, "Art seemed to lose its humanity when applied to pure observational science." He spent his youth pursuing his interests in science while frequently utilizing his drawing ability in these endeavors. "Ever since I could remember, I was exceedingly objective by nature; so imposing my intuition, emotional perception and feelings into my drawing was challenging."
In 1975, Thomas enlisted in United States Army and spent the next three years in the Signal Corp where he served in Korea and Germany. After the military, Thomas returned to Germany and worked as a field engineer for Raytheon. His liberal time off allowed him to continue his studies in art as he traveled Europe.
While in Florence, Thomas studied the renaissance where he became a great admirer of Leonardo daVinci. "I felt a kinship with daVinci after viewing his sketches. They were objective studies that explained the science and structure of the subject void of any emotional impetus." But it was his later studies in France that Thomas found most rewarding, "During my second trip to Paris, while studying impressionism and post-impressionism, art eminently became a passion for me. I was able to study the works of great artists whose paintings not only revolutionized the world of art, but also transformed mine. This is when I realized that it is not enough to be a painter of light, an artist must paint life"
Thomas studied painting at Montana State University, where he graduated in engineering. Afterward, he continued to work in the aerospace industry until 1992, and now works in the computer industry writing math and accounting software, "It is my incessant pursuit in math and science and maintained intensity in objectivity that affords me a natual dispensation of rigidity in my paintings."
When asked which artists have the most influence on his works, Thomas replied, "Whenever a painting speaks to me, the artist has in some way influenced me. I find that in the works of Maxfield Parrish. Toulouse-Lautrec touches me in subject matter and delivery...I adore his lesbians. I love the works of Degas, Manet, Albrecht Durer, Raphael and daVinci for mastery depiction of their subjects. Monet, early Renoir and Mary Cassatt really capture my soul with their use of color, real places and people. Intellectually, I find Dali's surrealism and Picasso's cubism quite engaging. Other influences include Klimt, O’Keeffe, as well as Cezanne and the fruits of his work".
Thomas explains his passion for painting, "When an artist’s emotional response to a mental image or visual cue is effectuated by an orchestration of paint, a masterpiece is born. My enthusiasm in painting is at the heart of this challenge, as I seek to express the true splendor of the human spirit. I like to use art as a vehicle, not to mask the ugly – war, poverty, cruelty, etc., but to provide a contrasting beauty that promotes a reawakening for those of us desensitized to this world and obstinate inspiration for those contriving to make our world a utopia."