I’m a full-time artist, designer and teacher but my first love was actually music. I studied classical piano and organ at university and realized fairly quickly that I hadn’t started early enough or worked hard enough to become a full-time performer.
So I eventually slid into something I did start on early. I’d filled scores of sketchbooks throughout my childhood, so trying my luck as an artist seemed natural.
In my twenties I taught myself painting and drawing — studying ‘how-to’ books and practice, practice, practice. After a few years I was freelancing for magazines (MacLeans, the Toronto Star, Entrepreneur, etc. ) and advertising agencies, eventually working as an art director or creative director. The one job I stayed longest at was as a syndicated editorial cartoonist and arts columnist for a daily newspaper.
After I left the news business I did commercial illustration, selling my work mainly in the U.S. with Deborah Wolfe, an agent based in Philadelphia. Meanwhile, I painted, selling my fine art privately and through galleries.
What kind of paintings? Well, I’ve covered a lot of territory: abstracts, landscapes, still lives and portraits. I’ve created work using just about every medium, including digital illustration with an electronic tablet. I’ve also been commissioned to paint the portraits of a number of prominent Canadians. Last year I finished a large oil portrait of the Right Rev. Andrew Absil, Anglican Bishop of Toronto, now hanging in the Vestry of St. James Cathedral.
At the moment I’m working on a series of large, Canadian, wilderness landscapes and preparing a one-man show of 60 watercolour portraits. I’ve also been teaching painting and illustration at George Brown College.