By Tom Ward
Last weekend, when the Denver Broncos, led by Peyton Manning, came into town to play the Dallas Cowboys, the result was one of the most explosive, high-scoring passing fireworks displays in NFL history, with the Cowboys being on the losing end of the gunfight. It appears that Manning and the Broncos have a date with destiny as they roll along mowing down opponents at breakneck speed setting records in the process.
In their pursuit to win a Super Bowl title, the Broncos have a world renowned artist tagging along for the ride with them named Malcolm Farley. Farley is a Colorado native and an old friend of mine who is a truly gifted man with a paint brush in his hand. Malcolm and his infamous brush has been “front and center’ for Super Bowls, Hall of Fame Inductions, and charitable events with the biggest names in history. He has chronicled the most prestigious events on the globe, spanning from the Olympics, the World Series and U.S. Opens, to the Grammys, The Oscars, and presidential inaugurations.
Being a Hall of Fame athlete as a collegian, his inner knowledge of the game, combined with his unparalleled talent, his sports art is a highly collected commodity in today’s marketplace. Considered America’s premier sports artist by many,Malcolm has been on hand for the most prestigious sporting events that grace our planet. His annual Super Bowl commemorative limited editions, signed by the winning quarterback, are always a sellout. He is well known for his fantastic artwork drawn at live events, so I had to ask him how much more difficult is it to capture subjects when they’re moving compared to a still image.
Malcolm said, “Yes, moving images are tougher, but I have a photographic memory, and I use the surrounding elements (scoreboard, signage, etc) to build up the painting before I finish the main subject. Having played sports all my life, it’s more of a instinctive feeling to how the painting unfolds. No matter if I work from life or still photograph, I tried to add the element of movement through my use of color and gestural lines.”
For the last two decades Farley has shared the stage with the biggest names in the music industry. From capturing Sting and the Police Reunion “Live” at the 2007 Grammy celebration, painting pop star Seal on a floating stage in Las Vegas, to all out interactive “jams” with the legendary Carlos Santana, a swirl of Malcolm’s brush has created some of the most definitive music images in history. His art is in the collections of prominent celebrities, hangs on the walls of major entertainment venues, and has graced one BILLION promotional cans for Pepsi. Considered “The Artist to the Stars,” Malcolm’s colorful images portraying contemporary subject matter have been etched into the consciousness of all who have witnessed his live painting appearances or gazed upon a gallery of his work.
These days Malcolm’s been busy working with Manning and the Denver Broncos. During our recent phone conversation he said, “ I have worked with Broncos and John Elway for years, as well as Peyton when he was with the Indianapolis Colts… now I am chronicling the season on canvas for the team and the NFL.” Malcolm is hoping this dynamic 2013 version of the Broncos continues onward, hopefully culminating with a Super bowl appearance in New Jersey in February.
Malcolm added, “Last season with Peyton joining the team was a fun year, but this season so far has been off the charts.” Malcolm told me he’s been drawing something for every game and the hopes are to put together a coffee table book at the end of the year to commemorate their season. Malcolm believes this is going to be a special year for his hometown team which it already has been only five weeks into the season. I first met Malcolm back in the early 1990’s when he was on vacation down in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico where I was living at the time during the winter months teaching golf and running tournaments. He invited me later that summer to come to Denver to do a golf clinic and play in a charity golf event there.
At the time I could see Malcolm was a very talented artist who was on the verge of becoming a big international success in the art world. Unfortunately, we hadn’t seen each other in awhile, but last year he called me to tell me he was coming to North Texas and would be out at the Vaquero Golf Club doing some commission work for the club. We got together for lunch to catch up with each other’s lives and he told me that he had remarried to a lovely woman he met down in Puerto Vallarta named Amoy, who is from Jamaica, and they have a 3 ½ year old son Spayne. I sure felt old when he told me about his other sons that I remember when they were little babies. Both of his older boys are now attending college here in Texas. His oldest son Tanyan is a junior at Rice University and plays tight end and is the starting long snapper for the team. Malcolm mentioned that his son is getting some good looks from some NFL scouts, which sounds promising. Parker is a freshman at Sam Houston State and playing tight end there.
It’s been nice to reconnect with Malcolm who is such a good guy and a brilliant artist that has been compared by many to the late, great Leroy Neiman, which I know he considers a wonderful compliment. Please check out his website at www. malcolmfarleyfineart.com, which is a very comprehensive site that goes into great depth about his magnificent career. Over the past few decades Malcolm has captured a who’s who of superstars in action, like Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Andy Roddick, Serena Williams, Lebron James, Magic Johnson and many more too numerous to name for this column. Many of his prints, from all the different sports to entertainment icons, as well as beautiful destinations like Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, are available to purchase through his website.
He still calls Colorado home, but divides his time between there and Puerto Vallarta during the winter months when he’s not globetrotting around the world painting at some big international event. Finally, if you’re looking to add something really special to your next golf tournament or corporate outing I would highly recommend you to contact Malcolm about attending as your special guest because he’s a terrific speaker with great stories and he’ll dazzle your clients and friends with his amazing brush strokes of greatness.
Tom Ward can be reached at www.teetimewithtom.com.