Townley, born in 1972 Ithaca, NY, grew up in the beautiful town of San Clemente spending most of his time as a kid surfing the San Clemente Pier in perfect 70-degree SoCal weather. He attended the Platt School of Art & Design.
Townley has worked for several commercial newspaper and magazine publications, where he felt that, as a designer, his artwork was a tool for corporate waste.
The motivation to separate himself from an environmentally destructive industry sent Townley on a road trip across the US to eventually establish his first organized art shows for friends in a collaborative space called, 104, in San Clemente in 2004. Here, Townley dedicated himself to studying art, art history, and delving into the landscapes he saw that fueled Townley’s passion for environmentalism. Back to his hometown in San Clemente, it was obvious that the planet was changing for the worse; now, surfing seasons were in 80 to 90-degree weather and feeling cool coastal air meant running the air conditioning the whole day. Townley’s oil paintings started to feature dark skies, on a hopeful horizon, and rich, potent landscapes designed with globs of oil. For Townley, leaving the corporate world, a “perfect” job by societies standards, for 104 was an emotional journey.