Tim Tolman’s artwork features mixed media, oil painting, collage and silkscreen prints on panels.

The oil paintings are produced using brushes and putty knives. The textured surface is unified by layers of glaze. This allows the viewer to spend time with the overall appearance as well as the nuance of the surface.

The mixed media landscape and still life combine paper, fabric, wheat paste, acrylic paint, and resin. The result is an imagined impression. The work transforms into its own identity away from the source material. The fresh color relationships and the slightly transparent paper overlays create a one-of-a kind look that viewer may appreciate both from a technical and aesthetic point of view.

The silkscreens are single color screens printed on top of a pre-painted colorized or collaged panels. The result is a series with each piece original. These silkscreen are a kin to the mixed media paintings. While the paintings deconstruct photographs, the silkscreens are additive relying on abstracted form behind the final layer of high contrast halftone, bit mapped or hand drawn reference to a photo.


Tim has become a founding partner and the Director of Development at the Providence, RI gallery, Providence Center for Photographic Arts The gallery located at the base of college hill in Providence will feature photo-based art with new shows every month.


Raised in the foothills of the Wasatch Mountains, Tolman completed a BFA at The University of Utah in three years with honors. He studied with many notable American artists there, including the renowned portrait painter Alvin Gittins, the nationally-recognized abstract/realist landscape painter V. Douglass Snow, and Hollywood visual concept designer/artist Frank Anthony Smith. Tolman was a classically trained artist in an age of conceptualism.

Tolman left college and began his career as a pictorial painter for outdoor advertising. Billboards were all hand-painted until the late 1980s. Quickly, Tolman turned from painting billboards to designing them. This eventually led to relocating to Providence, Rhode Island and attending the Rhode Island School of Design. Tolman enrolled in classes, but was immediately employed at The Providence Journal to art direct their pre-internet project called videotext because it combined text and image simply like billboards. That led to successful career as a Creative Director in which Tolman was a very early adopter of digital technology for print, video, animation and audio. Tolman worked with many top 100 corporations, network and public television stations, leading universities and local businesses. He was part of the team that launched the Food Network and he designed their first identity. He was one of the first animators to create high definition 3-D animation using the early IBM PC. He worked closely with the Brown University graduates who created AfterEffects. He taught the first page design course at the Rhode Island School of Design on the MacPlus. By 1986 Tolman was teaching art direction and computer-based design classes at RISD. He continued to teach as an adjunct faculty member for twenty years.

Throughout his career, Tolman was fascinated the gestalt of billboard design—merging idea, copy (text)  and image into a singular message. Years of experience with image, composition, color, and scale made the move to painting a natural progression. By 2012, Tolman turned away from commercial design to become a full-time painter.