Joined Carmel Art Association in 1934.
Ellwood Graham attend the School of Fine Arts, Washington University, in St. Louis. His first commission, after completing his art training, was a post office mural. He has received 68 awards; as a result his paintings are in the permanent collections of prominent museums in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.
After building a home and studio in Monterey, he was commission by John Steinbeck to paint in Mexico. Later steinbeck asked him to paint his portrait while writing Sea of Cortez in his studio.
He gained early critical success as the first Abstract Impressionist in the West and national prominence as the first modern pictographer.