Lucas Artists Fellow

  • PRACTICE : Visual Arts
  • FROM : USA/Trinidad & Tobago

About the artist

Born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, Edward Rooks has illustrated many of the island nation's threatened animals in their native habitat as commissions for nature enthusiasts and biologists. Currently, Edward is a naturalist and wildlife artist living in San Jose, California, where he teaches drawing and painting workshops and college courses, leads nature tours and creates acrylic paintings.

Since 1990, Edward has led Cheesemans’ Ecology Safaris, including penguin drawing classes in the Antarctic, and nature/birdwatching tours to Trinidad and Tobago. His last tour to Trinidad and Tobago was Painting Nature with Watercolors in Trinidad and Tobago, April-May 2007.

He has taught bird drawing for the Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society, for Montalvo Arts Center’s Art in the Barn, at the annual Central Valley Birding Symposium in Stockton, and at the California Fish and Wildlife's Wild on Wetlands Weekend in Los Banos, CA. Edward and his wife, Janice Edgerly-Rooks, were the nature consultants for Shona Kitchen's Domestic Wildnerness Channel at Montalvo's Project Space, November 2006-January 2007.

Edward also works as a part time consultant and art instructor for Santa Clara University's Department of Art and Art History, Environmental Studies Institute and International Programs.

Awards and Publications

Edward's painting of Trinidad's Oilbirds won a 1st place award in a juried art show at the Los Gatos Art Gallery in 1994. His painting of a California Tiger Salamander won the 1st place award in the California Department of Fish and Game's Native Species Stamp Contest in 1994. His Golden Trout appeared on the California Sport Fishing License in 1993. He designed a wine label for Johnston's Vineyard of Napa Valley, that won a Gold Medal in the label contest of the New World International Wine Competition in 1996. 

Edward's illustrations appear in biological journals, nature magazines, booklets, newsletters and on a brochure depicting 37 birds of the Asa Wright Nature Centre, and on the cover of the Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society’s 2007 Breeding Bird Atlas of Santa Clara County. Three Calendars based on his illustrations have been sold in Trinidad and Tobago.