Richard Warner insists La Jolla is the perfect place for fine-art painters

A native San Diegan, Richard Warner discovered La Jolla as a teenage surfer in the 1960s. In 1991 he moved to La Jolla with his wife, Mary Pat, and their two children. His career includes seven years as a high school art teacher and 28 years as principal of Warner Design Associates, a graphic design and marketing firm. Clients included San Diego Zoo, Chevrolet Licensed Products, Road Runner Sports, Griot’s Garage, Victoria Principal Cosmetics, and others.

Since 2006, Warner has been pursuing his first love — fine art painting. He belongs to three art groups: La Jolla Art Association, Rancho Santa Fe Art Guild, and the San Diego Portrait Society. He also belongs to St. Brigid’s Catholic Parish, where he serves as Eucharistic minister, is a member of the St. Brigid’s Adult Community, and serves on the church’s communications committee. His wife is executive director of Birthline of San Diego County, a nonprofit pregnancy support charity.

What brought you to La Jolla?

Boomer Beach. In high school and college, my family lived in University City and every weekend I’d dash over in my green VW bus to Boomer and body surf with my buddies. Later in life I moved to town with my wife, Mary Pat, and our two kids, Scott and Blair, so that they could attend the excellent La Jolla public schools.

What makes this area special to you?

The scenery. La Jolla is full of natural beauty and is the perfect place to be an artist.

Patch the potholes and improve parking in the Village. I’d also return the Children’s Pool to its natural state, as it existed before the seawall was built.

Who or what inspires you?

People and places. I love painting people in natural settings. I always carry my camera with me to capture a unique view or an interesting person so that I can paint the image later in my studio. I’ve done a number of portraits of people that I don’t know and may never see again. But I do have that moment of time frozen for me.

If you hosted a dinner party for eight, whom (living or deceased) would you invite?

Jesus Christ, Michelangelo, my deceased father and mother, my wife Mary Pat, my son Scott, his wife Gianna, and my daughter Blair. Boy, picking just eight is tough! And I didn’t include my granddaughter or myself yet.

What are your five favorite movies of all time?

“Blues Brothers,” “Life is Beautiful,” “Midnight in Paris,” “Goldfinger” and “Toy Story.”

What is your most-prized possession?

My home. It’s a Spanish style home with a central courtyard. Dinners out there are magical, especially when family is in town.

What do you do for fun?

Paint, cook, drink wine, and go to the beach. Is there anything else?

What is your greatest accomplishment?

I hope that I am a good father. There is nothing that could be a greater accomplishment to claim.

What is your philosophy of life?

I try to live my life in a way that when I’m about to pass away, I’ll be able look back with pride and see that I did the right things. Oh, and also, to listen to my wife … she’s usually right!