Tom Antonishak grew up in the mountains of Pennsylvania where he developed his love of art and nature. After serving in the US Navy and in the Defense Intelligence Agency, Antonishak studied art at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. He worked for several years as a commercial artist, eventually opening his own graphic design studio, “The Art Department of Tom Antonishak.” His interest in history led him to begin painting the American West. He traveled widely to militia musters, pioneer villages and Indian gatherings to sketch authentic details for his work, which is distinguished by an acute sense of accuracy and intense color.
Eventually Antonishak was drawn to wildlife and has produced many award-winning studies. His most notable award was the “Arts for the Parks” National Park grand prize in 1993. Other accomplishments and recognition include designing the New York state duck stamp, and the 1993 Ducks Unlimited Guest Artist Print, as well as being invited to many national and international shows and galleries, such as the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum’s Birds in Art show in1996 and The International Exhibition at the Del Bello Gallery, Toronto, Canada.
In 1997 Antonishak illustrated books for both The Nature Conservancy and The Smithsonian Institute. His most ambitious painting to date was, “Legends of the Past,” which represents a white bison calf amid a herd of 500 bison. This painting sold at the 1997 Wildlife Art Sale at Christie’s of London, England.