Michael Knepp was born in Fairbanks, Alaska and grew up with an affinity for the outdoors. At the age of three, he began drawing and never stopped.
He began traveling to Mendocino to draw and paint in the area in the late 60’s. Entering numerous juried shows, Michael was awarded the Bank of America Art Award in 1971.
Michael Attended undergraduate studies at the University of California, Davis. After graduating with a B.A. degree. In 1977, he moved to Los Angeles and was able to attend postgraduate studies at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. In 1984, he was awarded Honorable mention for work submitted to the Society of Illustrators show in New York City. Michael graduated in 1985 second in his class with “Portfolio of Distinction”.
After getting his degree, he moved to New York where he made his living illustrating for publications including the New York Times, Hartfield Courant, Hearst Publishing.
He moved back to California where he renewed his pursuit in oil painting in 1997. Creating landscape paintings of the local rural area in Yolo County resulting in a one-man show at the Yolo County Historical Museum in 1999. About that time, a friend and fly-fishing guide, Chris Parsons, introduced Michael to fly fishing in the northern part of California. With the impact of the scenery he visited, a focus on the locations and the various aspects of the sport itself became an important component of his work. Recalling visits to the Oakland Museum of Art, return visits to the museum rekindled the respect for the works of the Hudson River School.
Michael was selected to participate in the juried show and benefit auction for the Crocker Museum in 2011. His artwork of fly-fishing has graced the covers recently of California Fly Fishing and the Dingley Catalogue.