Nancy Ryder grew up at Air Force bases between the Mississippi River and the Rockies, taught school in the Texas panhandle, and then retired to east Tennessee to glean inspiration from the rich scenery and history here.
She enjoys several different media, including graphite drawings, colored pencil, watercolor, and even pyrography, but is now exploring oil. In her work she prefers scenes that tell stories often whimsical in nature and including animals. Occasionally, she does portraiture. She uses strong contrast and perspective to enhance her work.
She has shown her work in Knoxville and Morristown, Tennessee. Perhaps Nancy's most noteworthy work is the 185-foot mural at the Knoxville Zoo painted in the summer of 2008.