TOE Exclusive :: Greg White Interview

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1. Where were you born and where do you live now?

I was born and raised in Prince Rupert, a small, rainy town along the west coast of British Columbia, Canada. After graduating from University, I taught English in South Korea for almost two years. After my contract had expired, I traveled throughout India, Thailand, and Peru before finally returning home. Right now I am visiting my family in Prince Rupert, but I’ll be returning to school in the fall to further my education.

2. Tell us about your education.

In high school I did well in science classes. I majored in biology at university, but I also took a number of psychology and Spanish courses. Currently I am enrolled in a physical therapist assistant program that begins this September.

3. What is the one book you will regret never having read?

One of my favorite books is “The Red Queen” by Matt Ridley. In his book, Ridley provides extensively supported explanations for some of the more puzzling human behaviors, specifically those involved during our interactions with others. It’s a fascinating subject and this is a great introductory book to the subject.

4. What is your favorite ingredient?

Macadamia nuts. A soft, chewy, white chocolate chip and Macadamia nut cookie is heaven in baked form.

5. How did you get interested in art?

My mom is a retired primary school teacher. When I was growing up there were always neat and colorful art supplies lying around our home. With them I was able to keep myself occupied for hours. I am grateful that my mom provided me with the tools to express myself in such a creative way from early on. I sincerely believe I wouldn’t be painting right now if it wasn’t for her.

6. How has your practice evolved over the course of time?

Skill-wise, I am still far from where I wish to be, but over time I have noticed improvement in my anatomy drawing skills. My brushstrokes have also become smoother and more relaxed.

Painting requires a lot of patience, something that I was not prepared for when I was first learning how to use watercolors. I used to make the mistake of not allowing one layer to dry completely before adding the next. Instead of a beautiful glaze as I intended, the result was a muddy mess. These days I’m usually working on more than one project at a time. This way I can allow one to dry while I paint on the other.

7. What do you consider to be your greatest success?

One of the achievements that I am most proud of is “running” (re: crawling) a marathon distance along the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Completing a marathon at sea level is challenging enough, but much more so at several thousand feet and with the food borne illness I had acquired the night before. The trail typically takes 3-4 days to hike and our group was trying to complete it in one.

Only 25% of the people that began the race were able to finish the race on the same day and unfortunately I wasn’t one of them. But after a rough, wet, cold night of camping, I hiked the last couple of kilometers of the trail the following morning. My body was absolutely devastated, but in the soft morning light, the view of that ancient city in the mountains was worth all the hardship.

8. If you could ask yourself one question, what would it be and how would you answer?

“In what direction would you like to take your art?”

I would love to write and illustrate a children’s book in the mosaic style that I have been experimenting with lately. I feel very fortunate that my mom made it a priority to expose me to as many books as she could while I was growing up. When I was teaching overseas, I became very aware of the importance of colorful and interesting imagery when teaching a child how to read. My dream is to have published a book of my own that young people can read and enjoy.

Thanks for you answers and sampling of your artwork, Greg!

If you’d like to find out more about the artist and his watercolors, please visit his etsy shop: Dreaming Rabbit.

Or you can find him on Twitter: @whitegk

June 13, 2013 4:20 pm