Steve Hanks is a well known watercolor artist whose subject matter frequently focuses on female figures in interiors or landscapes. His subjects’ ages vary, from babies to women, as do their situations; some are nude studies, some evocative of mother and child tenderness, others children at play or women languidly posed on couches or beds.
Sometimes their is an erotic component, at other times, innocence itself seems to be a theme; but Hanks’ work often carries a feeling of high-end illustration, in that there is an emotional context to the work, and with it, an implied story.
Hanks’ masterfully controlled watercolor technique manages to seem almost casual in its deft application of color, subtle textures and clear value staging. He captures the brilliant contrasts of sunlight, rich subtleties of rain and overcast and soft tones of interior light with equal aplomb.
After graduating from the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, Hanks was pursuing realism in pencil drawings and impressionistic painting effects in oil, but an allergy affected his ability to work with oil and he moved to watercolor as his chosen painting medium.
SInce then he has received national recognition and numerous awards for his luminous, detailed and highly accomplished watercolors.
There is a good post on All Art News that gives a nice introductory overview of his work. The artwork on his official gallery is sometimes reproduced a bit smaller. I’ve listed some other resources below.
[Note: some of the work on these sites should be considered NSFW.)