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"Destinations" by Bernie Dick
Artist Statement – Bernard Dick
Travel has been a significant part of my life. So has photography and painting.
I recall well the family vacation trips across the country when I was growing up. Especially vivid were the trips through the Atlantic Provinces of Canada. My father, a welder by profession, had a strong interest in photography and shot hundreds of Kodachrome rolls. He belonged to the Kodak Camera Club and would take home prizes for his photographs from time to time. He had a good eye for composition which I think I inherited from him. After my wife and I married in 1969 and we got our family started, we continued the tradition of family road trips, crisscrossing the states and the provinces, revisiting my childhood memories, taking pictures just like dad had done.
After our children had grown and moved out my wife and I began independent foreign travel to Europe, Asia, South America, and the Middle East. I took lots of pictures over those years thinking that someday I would turn them into paintings. After retiring from teaching art and photography, a stint driving a school bus, writing an on-line history of Christian art, and doing volunteer graphic design work, I actually started doing something with all those snaps.
“Destinations” is the result of one year’s worth of finally doing something with some of those travel pictures. There are many more to go.
The images are sometimes photo digital art (my photographs digitally manipulated) and sometimes digital paintings (digital brush-in-hand, stroke-by-stroke technique) using my travel photos as references. Both approaches are often combined in one image.
There is one “painting” (Three Sisters) in this show that is not based on one of my photos but rather on a slide my father took back in the early 50s while travelling around the Gaspe Peninsula in Canada. I remember the morning he took that slide. He got up early to climb to the top of the cliffs that overlooked the coastal village. There were three French Canadian sisters also up there that he took a photo off with the coast down below. I played with the theme of three sisters. It was one of my first attempts at creating serious digital imagery. It is special to me.