I was born in southern Ontario in 1953, moving to Montreal where I grew up in Rosemount and Laval. The Quebec culture was a window opening on a new world for me. I immersed myself in the joy of life, and in the enjoyment of living and expressing yourself large.
I have drawn and painted since I was very young and am always pulled back to it when I have been distracted by day-to-day events. A quiet child, art showed me how to experience the world around me and relate to myself. Art has always reveled my heart to me and shown me the way.
In 1981 I moved to Yellowknife to work in the graphic arts field, book design and illustration. In 1995 I realized that my heart was sad and empty, I made a vow to begin drawing and painting for myself again. My first few sketches showed my professional habit of drawing very detailed, pinched and accurate reproductions of my surroundings. One cold day I was sketching outside in the fall. My hands were so cold I could not hold the small pencils and pens and I switched to larger chalk pastels that were in my box. I realized that the movement I needed was in the clouds and the swaying trees and the sun shining in my eyes. These elements and my cold stiffened fingers would not let me record every tiny detail. They demanded that I translate brief impressions and move on. I had never been so excited by my drawing before. With cold aching hands I had done one of my best pieces ever. I ran down the hill with the cardboard over my head grinning like a kid to show my partner what I had drawn.
I will try anything and often work on several pieces simultaneously, each one spurs growth and leads to new ideas. I often paint and draw with both hands at the same time and I find this heady and intoxicating like a dose of serotonin. The greatest lesson I brought away after two years of study at the Montreal Museum of Fine Art was that there were others like me around. I have sought out those souls ever since.
Style heterogeneity: Artists who refuse to settle into a signature style (rut)
Heterodox painter: A painter who is contrary or different from the acknowledged standard. When there is heterogeneity that cannot be explained? could it be the random effect? or following a whim? or being directed by an inner childlike flitting? or an indecipherable divine direction?
I try to play in my studio every day, I won’t say it’s a habit but if I don’t, I feel the withdrawal pains very quickly. I work in any and all mediums, what ever suits my purpose and I will try anything. I like to fool people and I use humor frequently to get my point across.
I decided long ago that no one would ever tell what to paint and that has freed me to do what ever I want. I am not interested in so called commercial or “marketable” art. It is a trite craft. I’m interested in advocacy and influencing and raising awareness through my work. And in having fun, I mean after all if you are not having fun doing art then for fucks sake give it up.
I try to touch people in their hearts as I reveal my heart to them. There are rules for art and if you don’t know them and break them then you are making BAD ART. All art deserves exposure; BAD art deserves to be exposed. So put your best out there every time, no cheating because other artists know and can see the difference.
All the work I do feeds my soul and fills my heart and then satiated, I return to my studio to do it again and again and again. My studio is my playground and my confessional and you are welcome to visit and view any number of works in progress. There is always something new.
I need to create something that cannot be resolved on a computer or under the influence of adobe phony shop. That is just so much conceptualizing using some programmer’s code and all you are doing is playing their games. My art requires the involvement of the body, I am interested in things that are impossible to create without materiality and human sweat, that are not merely cerebral, things that leave pigment in the cracks of my skin and a fullness in my heart.