In 1904 Field and Stream
sent Frank Tenney Johnson (1874-1939) to the Rockies and the Southwest. In The Frank Tenney Johnson Book
(Doubleday, 1974) author Harold McCracken says that this trip was the single most important event in Johnson’s artistic career. It was on this journey that Johnson established his distinctive style, discovered the subject matter on which he would draw throughout his life, and perhaps most significantly, learned to appreciate the quality of the western sky by day and by night. He made notes of the subtle differences not only in the sky but in the landscape and rocks in the moonlight. He later developed the skill of painting night scenes to such a degree that he became quite famous for these works.
A painter of the world of Indians and cowboys from the Wyoming Rockies to the exotic canyons and cliffs of New Mexico and Arizona, Johnson was considered the foremost painter of the West, recognized for picking up where Remington and Russell left off.