I may have mentioned that of late I’ve been scanning old 35mm slides attempting to recover some of the images of paintings and prints that I made during my early years working at becoming an artist.
I must mention that I began my quest as a young student, but abandoned my dream to pursue a business career putting off my quest until I was on the cusp of my fortieth birthday. Most everyone, correction everyone, thought that I was crazy to abandon a successful career to pursue a dream.
Considering that I hadn’t done any art since my brief attendance at the Ontario College of Art twenty years earlier, in order to make my decision appear legitimate I returned to school. I attended Georgian College of Applied Arts at Barrie, Ontario. I could have studied anywhere, but Georgian College had what I considered good instructors, graduates from OCA, Pratt, and so on, so one September day in 1979 I began my return to the art world.
It wasn’t easy, enrolled in classes with youngsters, teenagers 18 and 19 years of age. But, I persevered, got through the Foundation year and returned for a second year. Being old, at least old in the eyes of the other students, had its advantage as the instructors (who were younger than me), for the most part, treated me with some respect and allowed for me to advance beyond the younger students. I sat in on extra drawing classes and became a fixture in the printmaking department. I quite enjoyed printmaking and the fact that it was possible to make a multiple, something that I felt was important if one was to try to make a living as an artist.
As success in an academic environment entails adhering to your instructors course guidelines there exists little room for personal creativity. I persevered, pleased my instructors and learned everything that I could about printmaking. I was anxious to strike out on my own. I never returned for a third term. I purchased an etching press and began exploring my own creativity. It was to be a long, complicated journey.
Back to my 35mm slides and my digital scans. Unfortunately, I failed to photograph all that I produced over the years. I suppose that over the years, considering that original work was required on an never ending basis, I must have produced hundreds, and hundreds, of drawings and paintings not to count the hundreds, and hundreds of original prints. I did manage, however, to find the time to photograph a few pieces. What follows are a few of the first prints that I ever made, oh so long ago……….