Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Artist Spotlight: John Harrington

The busy work of assembling art for the 2012 line of Pine Ridge calendars is, believe it or not, already well underway. The great thing about this time of year is that it gives us an excuse to catch up with all of our PRA artists, and even to sneak a peek at some work in progress.
We recently got a chance to visit with John Harrington, the artist behind our very popular “Northern Getaway” calendar (and, as we found out, arctic explorer!)

John has been painting for more than forty years. He takes his inspiration from nature, creating calming tranquil images. We love this image of John’s - the steam coming off of the lake and the reflections of the evergreen trees in the water instantly stir up memories of early mornings at the cottage.

While John professes “Nature is the artist. I try to duplicate it for others to enjoy,” he’s not content with only painting images of his surroundings; he’s got to dig right in! We caught up with John and his wife Fran just in time to get a tour of their “Mississauga In Bloom” winning garden! The contest picks the top handful of gardens in the City of Mississauga based on visual appeal, design, and originality. Fran was quite modest about their win, but I still think I see a glimmer of pride behind those eyes.

John & Fran in front of their prize winning garden

John’s love of nature doesn’t stop with the garden. He has travelled extensively including South East Asia and Europe as well as The United States and every province in Canada. He’s even made ten trips to the Canadian arctic, and these were no pleasure trips; they were government supported expeditions. John led teams in search of artifacts and remains from British explorer Sir John Franklin’s ill fated expedition in 1845. John has helped gather and bury the remains of 14 of Franklin's men, and his teams have made some amazing discoveries including 3 Franklin lifeboats, several encampments and countless artifacts.

John writing in his diary during one of his Arctic expeditions

On a lighter note, John’s most recent travel is to some place a lot warmer! He and his wife Fran have just left for five weeks of backpacking around Greece! Fran and John will carry all of the trip’s supplies in their backpacks, and this isn’t a one time event. The pair venture out on at least one long trip a year and Fran manages to live out of that small backpack for the entire trip! What a woman!

If you’re interested in learning more about John and his adventures visit His Pine Ridge Art 2011 Calendar is now available for purchase online HERE

John's original paintings can be found at:

River Coyote Gallery
53 Lakeshore Road East
Port Credit
(905) 278-3337
The Upstairs Gallery at the Harrop
345 Steeles Ave. East
(905) 878-8161