In 1992, after graduating with a degree in Art History from Queen’s University in Kingston Ontario, Canada, I moved to Vancouver, B.C. Canada, where I studied Fine Art (specifically drawing and painting) at Emily Carr College of Art and Design. In 1995, I moved back to Toronto, Canada (where I was born and raised) and began exhibiting my paintings in both group and solo exhibits around the city.
It was during this time that I also began teaching art. I taught Mixed Media, Painting and Drawing, Figure Drawing and Painting as well as “Science Art” at the Avenue Road Arts School on and off for the next 12 years. I was a curator of exhibits of student art work for “Arts for Children”—a Toronto based arts charity that raises funds and awareness of the importance of arts education – at BCE Place and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)– in 2001. Working with The Royal Conservativory of Music’s “Learning Through The Arts” Program for three years between 1997 and 1999 added to my appreciation for communicating the very practical value the arts have in terms of helping teachers use various artistic disciplines as teaching tools in achieving academic goals for their students.
In 1997, when the opportunity to collaborate with the Avenue Road Arts School and Kids Can Press to produce “The Jumbo Book of Art” and “The Jumbo Book of Outdoor Art” presented itself, I was thrilled to play a role in writing and illustrating the artful ideas my collegues at the Avenue Road Arts School and I had developed over the years at one of the best private Art Schools in Canada. Making visual arts an easy, fun and accessible educational tool became an important personal goal at that point and continuing to work with Kids Can Press to produce the “Starting Art Series” seemed like the natural route to take. Both the Jumbo Books and the Starting Art Series have received much critical acclaim and reviews from librarians, teachers and parents alike in North America, Europe and Asia, and I feel very privileged to be regularly invited to schools, classrooms and special events where I can continue to teach and demonstrate my passion for painting, illustrating, writing and the value of Arts Education for all.
- Mattoo, Let’s Play!, 2010 Author/Illustrator
- The Imaginary Garden, 2009 Illustrator
- 123 I Can Build!, 2009 Author/Illustrator
- 123 I Can Collage!, 2009 Author/Illustrator
- 123 I Can Draw!, 2008 Author/Illustrator
- 123 I Can Make Prints!, 2008 Author/Illustrator
- 123 I Can Paint!, 2007 Author/Illustrator
- 123 I Can Sculpt!, 2007 Author/Illustrator
- The Jumbo Book of Art, 2003 Author/Illustrator
- The Jumbo Book of Outdoor Art, 2006 Author/Illustrator