This solo exhibition comprised of 25 paintings, 22 of them were achieved since early January of 2007. After all the time spent in my studio focusing on all of energy on this single show, I could never have imagined in my wildest dream that it would turn out the way it did. A buzz had started during the week leading to the opening, as pieces started to sell. Yesterday, as I was unwrapping the paintings inside the gallery in preparation to set up the show, a lovely lady getting a first glance of the paintings and another lady on the phone from Tennessee each acquired a piece. Tonight was no exception. A steady flow of well wishers came to view the collection, and I had a chance to engage in some very lively conversations with so many of them during the full three hours. I had so much fun meeting all of you and was touched by the comments. When the evening was over, we did a tally of the red dots, and 19 out of the 25 had sold. I am still in shock, and it hasn't sink in yet.
First I want to thank my wife Suzanne and son Jean-Luc. Sue you are my rock, the north on my compass when I lose my direction, the voice of reason, my muse, my soul mate, the reason I became a painter when you surprised me on the year of our wedding with a set of watercolors. I love you more today than ever. Jean-Luc, you have the kindness heart and most positive outlook on life. When I became your father, I thought that I would have to teach you so much stuff. As it turned out, it was you who thought me even more. Je t'adore. Thank you so much for being by my side this evening.
To Cliff Turner and Shannon Merrifield, the proud owner of Handworks Gallery, I cannot thank you enough for putting your thrust in me by hosting this first solo show with your gallery. Cliff is a hyperrealist/trompe oeil artist himself. I first became aware of is work in 1999 during a solo show held in Saint John. This was a few years before they took over Handworks Gallery. His art had an immediate impact on my own work. I seems a bit surreal still that I am showing my work in their galleries today. I am so lucky and grateful for this opportunity. To gallery employees, Joanna, Jeneca, Ray, and another young lady I met tonight which I cannot recall her name (I'm sorry), thank you for all your help.
To Dr. Jeff Sheppard, and the Chiropractic Centre of Saint John and Rothesay, who sponsored the exhibition. A chiropractor is a runner's best friend. Thank you so much for your support, and tonight he was also an painter's best friend.
To everybody who came tonight to help me celebrate. To all the patrons who purchased the art, you have made this evening a great success. I hope that my paintings will add a little ray of light in your homes. To Ron for your phone call during the reception to cheer me on. To everybody who e-mailed me to wish me well. To all those who will come see the show in the next two weeks, your encouragement and supports means everything.To all my fellow blog painters who have encourage me since I started to post my art. And to all those I may have forgotten, this would not have been possible without you.
This show is dedicated to my parents who would have been thrilled. My father often carried a small photo album of my paintings with him. He had great artistic abilities himself. My mother was the most endearing person I have even met. I was lucky to have them as parents. I am certain that tonight you were enjoying yourself on cloud no. 10. I miss you both.
Raymond (1924-2003) & Emma (1932-2006).