Glen Hopkinson was born in 1946 in Laramie, Wyoming, just a few miles from the old Mormon Trail. His parents, Harold Hopkinson and Vivian Hamblin, both of Fort Bridger, Wyoming, took their four children to Byron, Wyoming. Glen’s father was the Superintendent and Art Teacher of the local high school. Harold spent his off hours building his art career. Glen would recount, “My dad’s studio was a haven of visual pleasure for me. When I was little and wanted to paint, he would get out some of his older brushes and water colors for me to use. I would literally be ‘underfoot’ painting my paintings while he painted his. I would say my art training began at the foot of my father from the time I was two or three years old!”
After his early years of informal art training, Glen began his more serious art education during high school under the tutelage of his father. He also studied with a famous Saturday Evening Post illustrator, Robert Meyers as well as Donald “Putt” Putman.
Glen served a mission for the L.D.S Church in Korea for two-and-one-half years in the late 1960’s. Part of his mission saw him as editor and illustrator for the monthly mission magazine. Soon after arriving back home, he married his high school sweetheart, Pamela Cozzens. After graduating from B.Y.U with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree. Glen, Pam, and their young son Travis moved to Salt Lake City where he worked as an illustrator.
It was in the Spring of 1972 when Glen received a portrait commission that caused him to move his family to Cody, Wyoming. They say that fools rush in where angels fear to tread, and Glen and Pam decided that a painting sale here or there could be the beginning of an art career. With “true grit”, they began the uneasy yet exciting adventure of painting paintings, attending art shows, making sales, and most importantly, building their family.
Glen’s art career flourished. Painting commissions and sales at art shows and galleries provided the means for Pamela to be at home with their children while Glen was able to devote full-time to painting in his art studio. Blessed with five children, Travis, Heather, Todd, Summer, and Holly, Glen often found himself with his own little ones underfoot, begging for brushes and paint.
Glen and Pam moved their family to Mesa, Arizona in 1988, yet still spending much of their summers in Wyoming. Their children grew, left home, and soon Glen had a growing generation of grandchildren visiting his studio. Thirty years (and then some) have quickly gone by and the artist continues to paint his paintings with a mix of realism and impressionism, always excited about the work he is doing and grateful to God for allowing him the great privilege of sharing an artist’s view of our world and our ancestors’ world through his paintings.
His artwork is in permanent collections of the Montana and Wyoming Historical Society museums, the Whitney Museum of Western Art, and many corporate and private collections throughout the world .
Glens ability to visually tell a good story is one of the most striking features of his art. That skill proved useful in doing the storyboards and pre-production design for the pioneer movie “Legacy”.
His paintings and writing are featured in two books “Old Nauvoo Through The Eyes of An Artist by Glen S. Hopkinson”published in 2002 by the artist as well as his most recent book published by Deseret Book titled “A Faithful Life; the Story of Joseph Smith in Pictures.”