James was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on January 7,1943.
Like many children he was always doodling and drawing. He just never
stopped. When he was ten years old he painted his first oil painting,
a number painting Christmas gift which he immediatly made use of,
to paint a completely different picture. Although he is colorblind,
an unusual handicap for art,his family was impressed enough to
give James a birthday gift of paint tubes, medium and boards.
There began a life with art.
After many attempts to combine painting time with various
means of employment James decided to try painting full time. With the
usual period of "starving artist" he began to become recognized as
a rising artist in his community. The first ten years were spent selling
a painting to buy more paint and some groceries. From his own words
"To jump from good amateur to professional requires full attention. The
main reason for the struggles of the early years is that the art lacks that
"professional" touch, the only answer is study, study. I have found art
eventually invades one's whole life, with painting being my way of
expressing my philosophys."
James is a founding member and past president of the Pigeon
Lake Artists Society, a non-profit organization promoting the arts in his
He has had many one-man and group shows in Canada and the United
States. His paintings can be found in collections throughout the world
including numerous corporations, oil companies and government offices.
An important commission was by the Alberta Government and the Rocky
Mountain Elk Foundation. In 1988 a painting of a bull elk appeared on
Alberta hunting licenses and the following year on a collectors edition
stamp and print set welcoming the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to
About the unusual signature:
" My signature originated as a protest when travelling to an art show. A
psychologist being interviewed on a radio show remarked that people
were left-handed because of brain damage at birth. The more I thought
about that statement the more angry I became and decided that the
right-handed author of that statement could get a mirror to read my
signature. As time passed and I cooled down collectors said I could not
change now. The signature had become a trademark. When I think of it
now I laugh, I suppose I proved the psychologist right."
On my painting excursions in the Rocky Mountains, the Mt. Robson area,
along the shores of Vancouver Island and other locales I have met many
wonderful and interesting people. I would like to say a very joyful "Hello"
and if you would like to drop me a line send me an e-mail or sign my
guestbook and I will be sure to get back to you.
Also, if you are a past student from my many years of teaching art, or
if there are any questions about painting, send me an e-mail. firstname.lastname@example.org
I will try to help.
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