When Michael Keane was four years old, the first picture that he drew was of a boat. Since he can remember, he has had a special affinity for the sea; for the look, for the feel, for the sound of it. While growing up, he filled his grandmother's house with the ship models that he was constantly building. A lifelong artist, Keane started painting while still a child. He was given extensive instruction in oil painting and pastels. Soon, he was generating images of the sea and its ships.
Keane spent eight years of study with Marshall W. Joyce, a marine artist of some renown. During his years of study with Joyce, Keane was taught many things about the depiction of ships and sea that remain a valuable lesson to this day.
While studying with Mr. Joyce, Keane was concurrently studying portrait and figure painting with a well-known New York portrait artist. This artist was well grounded in classical oil painting, and his influence on Michael opened up whole new dimensions in Keane's marine painting. His work became more and more filled with luminosity and mood. His work grew so much, that his teacher asked him to become a partner, and share studio space in a waterfront loft. Also, during this time period, Keane enrolled in a university, and majored in visual design.
After his protracted sojourn into the world of racing cars, he turned his attention again to shipbuilding. He spent almost seven years as a Marine Quality Assurance Inspector for General Dynamics. Keane used the income and knowledge garnered from the job to further his training in art, and to design and build his own home. After General Dynamics learned of his extraordinary art training, part of Keane's employ was spent as a Technical Illustrator for that firm. During his time there, he also became quite proficient at reading and lofting ship's plans. He now uses these skills to construct ship models from scratch, and his technical skills add great authority to his work. All the while that Michael worked, he also painted. He was asked to become an instructor of painting for the Copley Society of Boston, and also taught fine arts painting for over fifteen years for many different organizations.