Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Artists’ Series – Glen Loates

This is the fifth in a series about Canadian artists I have know, and worked with.
Glen was sitting at the kitchen window of a friend’s home. The window overlooked a large backyard. There were a number of mature trees in the backyard with one fairly close to the window. The owners of the home were very generous with tossing out bird seed. As a result the backyard had become a Mecca for song birds! As we sat at the window a bright red Cardinal flew onto a branch close by. Glen already had pencil and paper in hand and was quickly sketching the morning guest. The details and animation of the bird were incredible. I watched with a new appreciation of Glen’s talents! This is likely my most vivid memory of my time with Wildlife Artist, Glen Loates. To me Glen is the epitome of a true renaissance man! He not only draws and paints to perfection. He writes novels and screenplays. He is a talented sculptor. He is an avid collector of many things and he is an explorer of some note. His knowledge of the world is child-like in that he needs to know everything. He has an insatiable curiosity of the world around him. Perhaps that is why he jumped at the chance to join the search for the “Giant Squid”! He is one of the few people who have traveled to the depths of the ocean. His account and renderings of the wondrous creatures he saw leave one breathless! In their ugliness, he sees beauty! In their bizarreness, he sees humour! In their world, he sees magic!
Glen has been painting as long as he can remember, a child prodigy. Glen has always been an innovator. He was one of the first artists to offer limited edition prints. As a pioneer in this area, he opened the doors for many artists to prosper. Even President Ronald Reagan benefited from Glen’s talents. As a thank you from Canadians, Glen presented the President Reagan with a wonderful painting of a Bald Eagle. While President Reagan was in office, the painting hung proudly in the White House. Today it hangs in the Reagan Presidential Library in California. Glen’s works, originals and limited editions can be found world-wide!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Artists’ Series – Mary Kendrick

This is the forth in a series about Canadian artists I have known, and worked with.
Mary Kendrick, like her art, is timeless! Judi and I have known and admired Mary for over 20 years. Over that period of time, Mary has remained the same, talented, modest and, most importantly, our friend. Over the years we have visited Mary at her home in Essex, hosted her at our home in Cobourg, purchased a number of her originals and taken art lessons from her! I guess what I am trying to say is that Mary has been an important part of our lives for many years. We really got to know Mary best when we convinced her to participate and exhibit at the first Cobourg Waterfront Festival. We lured her by promising to host her while she was in Cobourg. That was the start of a tradition that lasted over 15 years. I can’t remember how many good laughs we had during those stays! For many years Judi’s Cobourg Festival booth was next to Mary’s. The wisdom and friendship just kept on building! To say that Mary is modest would be an understatement. I believe that she is one of Canada’s best floral artists. Her works are collected by people from all over the world. While she was exhibiting at the Cobourg Waterfront Festival, she was consistently in the top 5 for sales. The same applied while she exhibited at the Buckhorn Fine (Wildlife) Art Festival. Mary has slowed down a little now, but her work is still as wonderful as ever and, I might add, much sought after.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Artists’ Series – Judi McWilliams

This is the third in a series about Canadian artists I have known, and in this case, married.

Judi McWilliams is one of those artists whose art triggers the imagination. As a result, collectors from around the world have purchased her paintings! Judi has had a love and flare for art ever since she was a little girl. As a matter of fact, her father was a graphic artist and her mother and sisters were very crafty! Her twin sister, Sue Caron, exhibits her acrylic paintings locally. Judi’s and my first real foray into the world of art was our visit, so many years ago, to the Buckhorn Wildlife Art Festival! We met so many wonderful artists at the festival and I am sure that many of these artists inspired Judi and caused her artistic passions to flow! A few years after our first art show, we entered the art world ourselves by becoming sales agents for Edwin Matthews and Buckhorn Fine Art Publishing. Eventually this led to our owning two fine art galleries and a wholesale custom framing business. By immersing herself in the art world, Judi discovered the infinite opportunities to pursue her own artist talents. Although Judi has tried several mediums and styles, she always comes back to free flowing watercolours! She likes the immediacy of the watercolours and by using her unique techniques, they seem to have a mind of their own! The images and subjects she paints come from reality, but are translated onto paper through her imagination. Over the years Judi has participated in many fine art events and festivals. She is always amazed and appreciative of how people enjoy her creations!