ABERDEEN -- Artist Dave Fuller of Parker is leaving his mark across South Dakota, one gymnasium at a time.
Fuller has spent the past eight years painting murals, mostly on the walls of gymnasiums involving high school mascots. His striking displays of huge art can be found in schools such as Marion, Brookings, Harrisburg, Lennox, Sioux Falls Lincoln, Vermillion, Garretson and Canton.
"I am getting a lot of requests, more than I can handle," said Fuller, who is in Aberdeen this week with his team for the State B golf tournament. "It is a good summer business, but I can only do a couple each summer. I always want to spend as much time as possible with my children (6-year-old son, Davin, and 5-year-old daughter, Terryn). They are such a blessing and what I live for."
Fuller got his start with murals at Parker High School, where he teaches and coaches.
"The Parker Booster Club asked me if I wanted to do a mural for them, and it turned out pretty good."
Growing up in Armour, Fuller was a sports star on the famous athletic teams from that community in the 1970s. He continued his basketball career at Dakota Wesleyan, where he also played some football and golf.
Along the way, the 51-year-old Fuller always had his passion for art in his back pocket.
"We didn't have art at Armour, but I have always loved to draw and paint. I am pretty much self-taught. I read as many books and watched as many videos as possible about art."
He used to be more into wildlife paintings.
"Sometimes, one of those paintings took as long as it does to paint a mural. Murals are fun because you have a huge canvas presented to you. I want my murals to be unique. I like large graphics, 3-D lettering done in various colors and forms and aggressive-looking mascots."
His art is probably seen by more people than any other artist in South Dakota.
"It is fun to go back to see the murals in the different school gyms at games," he said. "It has been a really neat experience."