About Lynda Lanker

An artist based in Eugene, Oregon, Lynda Lanker was born in 1943 in Kansas City, Missouri. Raised in Wichita, Kansas, she attended Wichita State University and majored in painting and earned a bachelor’s degree in art education.

With a love of drawing since childhood, she was inspired to become an artist when she sat for a portrait at the age of 11. After earning her degree, she taught middle school art, but rarely painted on her own time.

In 1974, she married Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Brian Lanker. Lynda was able to concentrate on portraiture after the couple moved to Eugene, Oregon for Brian to become director of graphics at The Register-Guard.

Lynda’s reputation as a portrait painter grew from the ’70s through the ’90s. Renowned watercolor artist Millard Sheets recognized her watercolors in the mid-1980s, subsequently resulting in solo shows and workshops. Her commissioned portraits include five presidential portraits for the University of Oregon.

She spent nearly two decades completing “Tough by Nature,” a book and touring exhibit, which is a series of 49 portraits of women ranchers and cowgirls in the American West. Lithographs and engravings from “Tough by Nature” are available for purchase.

Lynda’s recent work includes an egg tempera portrait of Dr. Maya Angelou, as well as a stone lithography portrait of the late Oregon Supreme Court Justice Betty Roberts.

Lynda is mother to two daughters and one son.