Graham Scholes, born in 1933 in Toronto has lived in Montreal, Quebec, Barrie, Ontario and, since 1987, in Sidney, British Columbia. He is a known as an artist, an author as well as an art educator. He conducted workshops and seminars across Canada for 16 years, starting in 1977. In 1989 his book “Watercolor and How” was published by Watson Guptill, New York City, for world wide distribution and his work and techniques are featured in another Watson-Guptill book, entitled Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Watercolours. Graham interred the self-publishing field in 2016 writing a autobiography culminating with the latest art form of Mokuhanga, Japanese Woodblock Printmaking which he has focused on for the last 27years. Another book “Let There Be Light” focused on the work he created in the Mokuhanga medium.
Since 1994 I have created 75 woodblock images, which required over 650 plates and the hand burnishing of 650,000 sheets paper. (This total includes test paper, verifying plate registration and image colour). All of Graham’s mokuhanga prints are created on Japanese hand-made Hosho paper that is 8 momme or heavier.
I have produced an in-depth one hour teaching video about the intricate details of this ancient technique. This DVD has been purchased by galleries around the world, including The Museum of Modern Art, New York City; The McMichael Art Gallery, Kleinberg Ontario; The National Gallery of Canada; Oxford Guild of Printers, United Kingdom; The Vancouver Art Gallery; Le Musée des Beaux Arts, Montreal, Quebec, among many others. An digital copy of this one hour instructional video is available on this web site.
My mentor is master printmaker Noboru Sawai on woodblock printmaking. In 1993, this new medium inspired me to start a series of innovative prints of the British Columbia lighthouses. I need to experience and have personal contact with my subjects, so with the co-operation of the Canadian Coast Guard, I visited all lighthouses on the British Colombia coast in order to get the material necessary to represent these majestic beacons. The series of prints of the manned lighthouses has taken me 15 years to complete and is a critically acclaimed record of some of these manned beacons, that will soon be automated.
I believe that there is no substitute for the ability to draw, and for 25 years, one day a week, I went back to the basics of Life Drawing. My philosophy is that an artist must always strive for higher skill plateaus, and continually develop an original and innovative concept. This belief has kept me motivated to challenge my own understanding. With this in mind, I purchased an etching press and have learned the techniques of Solar plate, Dry Point and Lithography. These new techniques are being used in conjunction with woodblock in a newly started series of prints entitled My Canada. These prints will portray iconic images of Canada, based on my personal experiences when I was conducting art classes throughout Canada.
CANADIAN ARTIST IS HONOURED
January 2020 the CEO of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria,
visited Graham’s studio. He choose a complete body
of woodblock prints for the Art Gallery’s collection.
This work is considered an important contribution to Canadian Art.