Comox Harbour Colours – Acrylic on Canvas


Dimensions 36 × 48 in


This is where we hung out when we were teenagers in the Comox Valley.  Swimming in the summer months and buzz bombing for salmon off the docks in the Fall.  Musicians often played for spare change attracting the teenage girls, this was perfecto.   Its a rich mans game now to afford a boat and moorage.  You have to buy the boat or wait for someone to die before you can park your boat.  It is more forgiving if you are a commercial fisherman.

I have done many paintings of fish boats, sail boats, coast freighters, tug boats and Coast Guard vessels.  I figured it out early on if you wanted to pay the bills paint “les bateau, tabernacle”.    For the ladies, the glacier and flowers of every variety.  Art is about emotion.  I play to people’s emotions and have sold 5000 paintings in 50 years.   50 of my  artist friends are dead, tote forever, they never figured out the game.  I’m a Scot its in our genes.   Its not what you paint, weird abstractions that they want to hang on their wall.  Its their hard earned money, they get to choose, not you.  The rule is never let your ego get in the way of the market place.

The Federal Fisheries  commissioned me to do 5 panels on plywood depicting the history of the Comox harbour and the various species of fish; from bottom feeders, bull heads, cod, to migrating sea run trout and salmon as well a kelp and aquatic plant life.  I did the research, reflected on the pictures and reconstructed the images, the 3-Rs of picture making.    I sealed the panels front and back, protection from the Elements.  I received the $5000 for the commission.  A year later  after hanging them in Comox Recreation waiting for them to be installed on the new walkway.   I received notice, they changed their mind and I got them all back which I have since sold.  So much for the way governments spend our tax dollars!!

Comox harbour was where the Royal Navy came to practice firing their guns as they disrupted the quiet life in  Esquimalt.  Then the Canadian Navy took over and the Spit became the training ground for sea cadets from across Canada.  What an experience for a kid from the Prairies to spend time in the Comox Valley learning how to sail, fire a 303 rifle and swim in the ocean.

The most scandalous story at Rob Road Junior High was when one of the wags talked Charlotte with the big breasts  to drop her bikini top so he could marvel at what mother nature had bestowed upon her.  Poor Gordon was delivering newspapers at 7 am to support a burgeoning family.  Charlotte looks down taps on her window and sheds all her cloths.  Gordon is 75 years old now and has never gotten over that vision of female curves and pubic hair.   It changed his attitude to the drudger of deliver the morning papers.