The Artist’s Evolution


Diane Less has lived and worked her whole life in one place: Greenford, Ohio. Spotted Horse Studio is located on a 160-acre farm owned by the Less Family since the early 1920s. Growing up on the family farm fostered Diane’s love for animals and she began drawing them at a young age. By the time she was 12, Diane’s parents arranged for her to take oil painting lessons.

Like most Baby Boomers, Diane grew up hearing a lot about the Great Depression but the fact that sign painters made a good living during the Depression is what sparked her motivation to pursue the craft and at age 14, she launched her career! Being inherently resourceful, she took up woodworking in high school and learned to make routed signs and art. She earned enough money to put herself through Mount Union College. After graduating with a BA degree majoring in art, sculpture and ceramics, Diane opened a pottery studio on the Less Family Farm. She developed a line of horse-oriented porcelain and with the help of her business partner, Bill Baird, the pottery line was marketed nationally to over 250 tack shops. Eventually, Diane sold  the porcelain business to a former employee and the line still thrives today.

By the late 1980s, Spotted Horse Studio had an opportunity to restore a large collection of  carousel animals owned by a private collector. Once the carousel collector finished his collection, Spotted Horse Studio was honored when the Butler Art Institute held a show featuring the twenty-two carousel pieces that the studio restored.

By the 1990s, Diane enhanced her mastery by attending workshops in more sophisticated sign skills given by Noel Weber and the late, great Rick Glawson. She became proficient at gold leaf and reverse painting. Today, Spotted Horse Studio is a unique art facility offering skills that are difficult to find in today’s market.

Diane Less learned her trade before technological trends evolved sign painting to what it is today. She understands the foundations of the trade while keeping up the advances that enable her to work efficiently and fast. Diane’s unique history is what makes her the artist to conceive and create the perfect art product for you.


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