Gonske studied at the Frank Reilly School of Art in New York City. The late Reilly gave him solid training in illustration. After a number of years as a successful illustrator in New York, he moved to Taos in 1972, where he began to work almost exclusively on location. Frustrated by the limitations inclement weather imposed on his painting in plein-air, he set about customizing a Ford pickup into a “paintmobile,” or rather, a studio on wheels. This mobile studio is stocked with canvases of various sizes and textures, and allows him to go on painting trips throughout California, Colorado, or wherever the road may lead. Gonske continues to live and work from Taos.