Born in Iowa and raised in Southern California, Stephen Shortridge excelled in art throughout his schooling, but had mainly studied commercial art. He took his first painting class while attending Idaho State University on a Water Polo Scholarship (Stephen was an All-American). Without formal training, the French Impressionists became his teacher, Monet in particular. Preferring full colors and bold painting strokes, Stephen has established his own aggressive style.
Stephen Charles Shortridge, the artist, may be more familiar to you as an actor. For fifteen years he sold you such products as Mennen, Speedstick, Coke, Certs and Head and Shoulders shampoo, to name just a few of the over fifty TV commercials he's done. Theatrically, he has starred as a series regular in "Welcome Back Kotter" as the southern sweathog, "Beau" and co-starred with Debbie Reynolds on the ABC show, "Aloha Paradise". He spent the year of 1987 playing the role of David Reed as part of the original cast on the CBS daytime soap opera, "The Bold and the Beautiful". It was after this role that Stephen set his priorities toward business and finally to pursue his love of art.
Stephen enjoyed acting but found painting much more creatively satisfying. He explains, "...the feeling of being totally free to create as an artist is exciting to me. In acting a large part of the creative process had taken place by the time I was involved. The writer, director, and producer had already made many decisions about the character I would play. In contrast, painting gives me complete control. I may race along in a painting and have a disaster on my hands or something I'm proud of...but, I make the choices and accept the consequences, good or bad. That's freedom...it's precious and the most fulfilling part of being an artist to me."
Amongst Stephen's collectors are celebrities Patty Duke, Donna Summer and Rick Dees. While living in the Los Angeles area, Stephen exhibited with fellow actor/artists, including accomplished artist, Peter Falk.