Bill Rabbit (1946-2012) was strongly influenced by stories told to him by the Cherokee elders. Many of Rabbit’s earlier paintings convey detailed depictions of the day to day life of Cherokee tribal members who settled in Oklahoma. Rabbit’s style has changed over time. His work moved from realistic to more ethereal. Rabbit’s art focused more on his feelings than what he believed would be commercially successful. He stated: “I came to the realization early on that if you have the courage to do the best you can and the courage to put it in front of the public and if you can learn to accept rejection, then you can do whatever you want to do.”. Rabbit was not fornally trained as an artist. He was accepted into the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico, but instead enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in Vietnam. Rabbit won numerous awards, includng Cherokee National Treasure and Five Civilized Tribes Master Artist.