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Moorpark artist Medlock captures golf moments in his book

By Jill Painter, Columnist

Posted: 02/23/2010 09:40:42 PM PST

Updated: 05/13/2010 01:42:25 PM PDT
































Medlock, who lives in Moorpark, has a 10-handicap. He also has countless friends in the industry, including Jack Nicklaus, who wrote the foreword, and his wife Barbara, and Arnold Palmer, who wrote the recognition.

"Scott Medlock is an artist who has successfully balanced reality and creativity over the years, and because of that, his work has touched our hearts," Nicklaus wrote.

Medlock even started his own golf tournament, the Scott Medlock Invitational, benefiting the Pat Tillman Foundation. Medlock has donated countless paintings to be auctioned or donated for charities.

Proceeds from his book go to the Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation and the Arnold Palmer Medical Center.


"The reason I love golf more than the other sports is because of the people involved with golf," Medlock said. "Everyone I've met is great. I look at a lot of the friendships that have come about through golf, with guys like (Doors guitarist) Robby Krieger, rock 'n' rollers to CEOs to grandparents and children - everyone can play this game.


"You can travel the world and play golf wherever you go. It really is spectacular being out in nature and getting exercise. It's an amazing experience."

The cover of Medlock's book is a painting of Nicklaus with his arm slung around Palmer while they're walking at Riviera Country Club. The ghost of Ben Hogan is in the background.


Medlock was commissioned to do a painting for the 1998 U.S. Senior Open, a tribute to Hogan and Hogan's Alley. He presented the painting to Hogan's widow, Valerie, the night before the tournament and was touched by her appreciation.

In 1996, Butch Harmon invited Medlock to attend Tiger Woods' 21st birthday party in Las Vegas. Medlock painted a picture of Woods hugging his mom, Kultida, after he won one of his U.S. Amateur titles. He presented it to Woods and asked him if he would give it to his mom.

At the Masters in 1997, which Woods won, Kultida told Medlock that she looked at the painting every morning.

There's another remarkable painting of Woods, who's looking up to the sky and celebrating the putt that put him in the playoff with Rocco Mediate at the 2008 U.S. Open.


Medlock was there.

He often travels to sporting events so he can capture the emotion of the athletes with his observations, too.

Babe Ruth's daughter, Julia, asked Medlock to paint a black-and-white photo of her father from the famous photo of him saying goodbye from outside the dugout in his surprising retirement announcement. Medlock asked for her permission to do it in color.


"She was very emotional in saying, `I brought daddy back to life,"' Medlock said. "That was a really powerful thing for me."

He was painting a picture of Phil Mickelson off the ninth fairway at Riviera Country Club during the Northern Trust Open earlier this month and fans checked out his work. Medlock doesn't mind people watching over his shoulder while he's creating his masterpieces. They often go by and say: "Whoa, I can't even draw a stick figure."

Medlock painted a picture of Natalie Gulbis, which is in the book, live on The Golf Channel.

"I'm more about creating an emotion with a painting," Medlock said. "I'd rather be able to reach into somebody's soul. The great thing about paintings, at least I hope, is that you give each viewer a little something different."

Medlock's book is available for $59.95 at www.scottmedlock.com and local bookstores.

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Scott Medlock had never golfed, nor attended a golf tournament, when his job required him to do paintings at the old Shark Shootout at Sherwood Country Club. Medlock played hockey, football, baseball and seemingly every other sport as a kid growing up in Eagle Rock.He didn't even know who the popular Greg Norman was, but he was fascinated with a pose Norman struck on the green at the tournament he hosted in 1993.

"I thought, `That guy right there is really cool the way he's leaning on his club. He's so relaxed waiting to putt,"' Medlock said. "When I saw that, I thought, `I have to create a painting of that moment.' I was brand new to golf.

"That literally is the first golf painting I ever did. It became kind of a signature piece. People tell me, you're the guy that did that one of `The Shark' leaning on his club."

It was a simple moment in time but has become a lasting image. The painting of Norman is one in a fascinating, 20-year collection of Medlock's artwork in his new book, "Scott Medlock: Capturing the Moment." Medlock, 41, has depicted all sorts of powerful sports moments, but he found his niche capturing them on the links.

He has landed lots of jobs to paint pictures from golf tournaments, and with them, invitations to play in celebrity events.

Davis Love III bought him a set of golf clubs in 1994, and Medlock taught himself how to play simply by watching the swings of pro golfers over the years.

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July / August 2010

FORE MAGAZINE

See pages 34-35

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