J O H N R O C H E L E A U
I am a Kelowna artist, and here in Kelowna nature is abundant and beautiful. When I was a boy though, I lived in the city in Windsor Ontario, but most all of our relatives were farming people. On Sundays we would either go for a drive out into the country, or visit one of my uncles on his farm. When we weren't together as a family, I would be out with friends seeking what natural spaces we could find in the city. They were usually just fields by the railway tracks; tall dry grasses, thorn bushes, and wildflowers. We called it going hunting because we usually came back with jars full of insects.
What I remember most from those days are the smells, the colors, the feel of being immersed in that sea of grasses and flowers. Perhaps there weren't really that many flowers, and maybe the smells in the air were tainted with the heady odor of creosote from the railway ties, but to me it was my safe place, a place of wonderment. Each day began fresh discoveries.
I've never stopped being that boy. I still look on the world as an adventure. As an artist, that boy and me can roam through the fields again. Painting takes me deep into the bones of nature. I paint because I want to be immersed in life's beauty and power. The paintings are my means of discovery and expression. Every painting is motivated by those drives. I believe that when we paint we communicate a little of the magic of nature, and I believe that nature -- and magic -- resides in our hearts
John Rocheleau was born in Windsor Ontario Canada in 1950. His Mother, a painter, nurtured his natural desire to be creative. Drawing particularly fascinated him; especially drawing portraits.
" I loved drawing people. It felt like I was stroking the subject's face with the pencil. I got to know them a little as I worked. Time passed unnoticed."
In 1969, he left Canada to live and work in London England. After six years in London, he moved back to Canada and settled in mountainous British Columbia. It was an easy decision, since most every spare day while living in England was spent in some forested area.
In 1981, the artist completed his first oil painting. His early efforts were focused on people oriented work. After that, many years past where raising a family, and his career at the time, took precedence over art. In spare time, John, His Wife, and their Son, explored BC's wilderness via canoe routes and hiking trails.
He started painting again in the early 1990's, doing mainly Street scenes. These reflected his feelings about living in England and traveling in Europe. Many of these paintings conveyed a philosophical or emotional viewpoint. It wasn't until the late 1990's that nature, always a powerful force in the artist's life, began to exert its power on his canvases.
In 2001 John Rocheleau became a full-time painter, though there have been periods where he has divided his time for income reasons. He has also put his hands to sculpture, using various materials such as stone, wood, metal, and masonry.
" I want to paint the spirit of things, and the emotions that I have. I use whatever techniques and color that allows me to most directly explore and express what I am painting. I am in awe of nature and everything about life. It is a great joy to know that for the balance of my life, there are endless possibilities for expression and communication in paint."
View Paintings In Studio
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