Although Kerry’s work is primarily painting and sculpting, he doesn’t shy away from trying out (and often excelling at) other art forms. Kerry has been drawing his entire life, although his parents didn’t realise he was an artist until he was 20 years old. He brought home a sketch of loons to show his folks – and they asked him who the artist was. When he informed them that is was him, his father was speechless and his mother said, simply, “We didn’t realise you could do that!”

Kerry’s artistic career began long before that fateful day when his parents discovered his talent. It all started with people noticing his skill and asking him to sketch their families. Kerry first got into oil paint 15 years ago through a friend. The two men met through a First Nations Drummers’ Circle and hit it off right away. They began making trips into the bush in Algonquin Park and that was where Kerry fell in love with the medium and with Plein Air painting. The bush is Kerry’s favourite place to paint.

Kerry found it was expensive as a relatively new artist to showcase his work in art galleries, so he and his wife decided to open Janna’s Gallery Café (coffee shop) and Kerry’s Place (restaurant) across the street from each other in downtown Pembroke to showcase his work and that of other local artists, especially students and youth. Before opening these businesses, Kerry worked as an art teacher on the Quebec side.

Kerry says “I like to paint things that stir up emotion” and he adds that each piece is imbued with that sentiment. “It’s hard to part with my work, because it’s a piece of me”. Whether it’s the painting from his youngest son’s first trip to the Barron Canyon, or the sculpture he made with boards his kids split at Karate, each piece tells a story. When you buy a piece by Kerry, you’re really buying a piece of Kerry.

Written by a friend