Michael Poenitske is a native of southern Illinois and a self taught artist who developed his lifelike drawing style from his desire to depict life as a persona. He is a member of the Mississippi Valley Art Guild who is becoming regionally known for his captivating portraits. Michael delights in capturing the unique aspects of his subjects inner beings. "One must gaze into the window of the soul if one wants to truly arrest the essence of a persons being" says Michael. He is a multimedia artist who works with pastels, charcoal, graphite, watercolor and ink. In his leisure time this former U.S. Marine enjoys hiking, kayaking, bicycling and camping.