The Men and Women Who Make Beachcomber

William Polley (Cover) has traveled in a huge circle to be able to retire and paint full time. “An incessant doodler as a child, I became a self-taught artist with my first medium being charcoal,” the artist tells Beachcomber. “I started painting seriously in high school with acrylics and was selected as art director for my high school yearbook and other school projects.”


Mr. Polley graduated from the University of Memphis with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Commercial Design and Artistic Painting. He joined the Marine Corps as an officer and a fighter pilot trained in the F-4 Phantom.  During those six years, he also served as an instructor in the Naval Training Command and produced pilot training films for the Naval Photographic Center.


Following his military service, he spent the next 25 years as a pilot for Federal Express, often traveling to regions that inspired his artistic talent.


“The main reason I moved to Walton County is because of the beautiful scenery of the Emerald Coast,” he says. “I have gone full circle from artist to pilot and back to artist. With reflection, art has never left my eyes.”


Many of Mr. Polley’s oil paintings are currently on display at Foster Art Gallery, located in Grand Boulevard at Sandestin in Miramar Beach.

Seagrove Beach resident Nikki Hedrick (“Behind the In-Between: Towne”) is a photographer and longtime Beachcomber contributor. She is the co-owner of 850 Music and Entertainment, and wears a few other hats, too. Nikki is currently up to her ears in beach wedding season and will soon be up to her ears with the 2019 Kite Film Fest.

Samantha Lambert (People) writes: “Three years now of living back in Florida, and it has been wonderful! Top faves about being back—having my family with me, beautiful beaches, clear blue/green Gulf of Mexico, laid back lifestyle, old friendships renewed and new ones made, fulfilling a dream of writing stories.”

Clay Jones (Cartoons) syndicates his cartoons daily to publications across the country. Clay was born in Fort Hood, Texas, and was raised in Louisiana, Illinois, California and Georgia. He currently lives in Fredericksburg, Virginia. His cartoons are featured on CNN and The Week’s Best Editorial Cartoons, and he was a finalist for the 2019 Herblock Prize.


Subscribe to the Claytoonz YouTube channel and watch Clay Jones create his masterpieces. And if you feel like some online shopping, grab some Clay swag at



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