When I was eighteen all I wanted to do was draw cartoons and be a photographer.
Few other things interested me with the exception of fishing and hunting, an odd pairing of passions.
My grandmother bought me all manner of Nikon photographic equipment, my father built me a black and white film and print processing lab in the third bedroom of our modest duplex, and after some convincing agreed to send me to a private art and design school, the Académie des Arts de Montréal, after I told him it was to become a “commercial” artist which made it more palatable for him to accept, versus law or some business administration or similar educational path.
Well as time marched on I wanted to get a new car, get my own apartment, and soon realized that I needed to make real money as the revenues from a budding creative life were meager.
So I went to a leading art studio in Montreal doing a variety of odd jobs, then as a junior art director at an ad agency, followed by advertising manager for Atlas Copco and the Canadian distributor for Fujifilm.
Although all these jobs did include some creative aspects, the core functions were marketing and business.
From that, I went on to magazine ad sales and magazine publishing with management and promotion consuming just about all my time.
But the purely creative aspects of my life had by then been sidetracked for good for all practical purposes.
During it all I greatly admired artists who remained committed to their creative roots no matter what.
About two years ago and pretty much at the end of my “career”, I woke up one day and dropped all the marketing, business development, and sales aspects and have committed the rest of my life however long it may be to the pursuit of those interests that truly inspire me… cartooning, photography and writing.
I’ve taken courses, built a macro-photography as well as a podcast recording studio, bought gobs of equipment and a myriad of hardware and software, and generally surrounded myself with all the creative tools I need.
Not a financially wealthy man by most measures, I’ve had to rationalize my financial wherewithal to accommodate this shift, but I feel better than I have in decades, finally mixing excitement with serenity and looking forward every day to the creative projects which I’m challenging myself with.
After a very long hiatus and as it should be, I will die an artist.
Excerpt from my upcoming e-book "Recollections from my time on earth - Snackable short stories."
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