Mike Bray, Leather Artist
In 1999, Mike Bray began his Leather Artistry work after renovating his family’s barn into an studio where he could follow his dreams of creating art while staying connected to his love for the rural lifestyle. The foundation for his leather-working skills was established while working side-by-side with his mentor Bill Gomer, a recipient of the Al Stohlman award for leather arts. Bill encouraged Mike to develop his own style of carving and design; consequently, Mike always strives to create distinct visions with his craft, rather than imitate western-style pieces he sees repeatedly in the saddle maker’s arena. He works with a variety of media and craft, including woodworking, sculpting, and painting. Because of his passion for history, it’s often the subject of his art; however, he creates pieces that reflect his love for nature and his imaginative, nostalgic vision of living a meaningful and self-determined life.
Mike connects with patrons of western decor and western art enthusiasts at a variety of national shows, including the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, the Stock Show in Rapid City, SD, and the Arab World Show in Scottsdale, AZ. He also participates in national art venues, especially those which promote community involvement such as: Herd About the Prairie: A Virtual Art Stampede in Fargo-Moorhead, a top sales winner in the 2005 and 2006 Custer Stampede Buffalo Art Auction fundraiser, and most recently his Tribute to the Troops saddle.
Likewise, Mike really enjoys connecting with individuals who commission him to tell a special story, honor someone they love, or create a piece that represents their way of life. Sometimes it’s the ideas and anecdotes of others that inspire some of his best work.
Bray Leather Studio is a small family owned business. Their goal is to build you a saddle creating a work of art, an original that can be pass down for generations to come. A Bray saddle is a masterpiece in leather, created specifically for the rider and the horse by saddle maker Michael A Bray. Mike uses Wickett & Craig leather USA tanned and solid brass or stainless steel hardware. At Bray Leather Studio, we pay special attention to the detail craftsmanship and quality while never forgetting our customers needs and purpose.