Hal ‘Grandpa’ Lasko was born July 28, 1915 in Toledo,OH – one of eight children of Austrian immigrants. As he was starting his career as a graphic designer, he left civilian life to serve in WWII, drafting directional and weather maps for bombing raids.
During life after his service he was a graphic designer in Cleveland, OH. Working on projects for companies like General Tire, Goodyear and The Cleveland Browns, he eventually retired from American Greetings in the 1970s. While Grandpa worked in a creative field, he wasn’t able to fully express his artistic desires on the job, which resulted in his staying up late to paint at home and amassing his own collection of work. His earlier work ranges from colorful drip paintings to abstract design.
He says it wasn’t until he retired that he was able to dedicate the time he craved to his art. In the late 90s Hal’s family showed him Microsoft Paint – y’know, the one with the “spray paint”? Grandpa was hooked. His work blossomed and he painted on the computer all the time. No one knew how important this program would become to Grandpa until he lost some of his vision in 2005 because of wet macular degeneration. Since then Hal has also lost the majority of his hearing. Despite these “setbacks” Grandpa wakes up every day and is still inspired to create.