When I look at my Dad I see a strong and sensitive man who connects deeply to the world through intellect, physicality and creativity and finds peace, inspiration and resource from nature. If we come into the world choosing our parents I think I picked the perfect Dad to give me the necessary momentum on my path to becoming the woman, artist and person I am today.
I grew up in a log house that my parents built on an old homestead between Salmon Arm and Canoe. It was nestled into the mountainside on the edge of a forest with cow pastures on with either side. We had chickens and a big garden and getting to school required a daily adventure down a long dirt road. There were coyotes and grouse and a big night sky abundant with stars.
Doug was always working with his hands to create beautiful things and some of my earliest memories are of him in his wood shop happily singing and working away. Now retired, he seems to be calling on his inner artist more than ever to make stone sculpture. It is so inspiring that he continues to learn and evolve throughout his life and is perhaps now taking bigger risks than ever in honing his artistic talents.
Music has been a big priority in his life. He has a massive record collection and as a kid I loved looking through the albums especially the Beatles from the holographic art on the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album to the beautiful melodies on John and Yoko’s, Double Fantasy. One particularly cool thing about him is that he loves to dance and that he is really good at it. I first felt the joy that dancing brings when he taught me how to Jive in our kitchen and I’ve been in pursuit of that freedom through music and movement ever since.
He was born and raised in Bralorne, BC, his Dad Tom moved there from Saskatchewan in the early 1940’s to leave farming for business and went on to develop the Dunbar Garage in the booming mining town. He also fortuitously bought a piece of property on the lake that was once the Sailing club property with three little cabins on the edge of a beautiful bay halfway down the lake and looking out to the Shulaps, Sloan, Penrose and Green mountains.
Nearly seventy years and four generations later this place continues to be a place of nourishment. I spent the entire first year of my life there and it’s hard to imagine my parents spending the winter there with no running water, electricity and a wood cook stove.
Part of what makes this place so special to me is that my Dad lives there now and I know that when I arrive after a long journey he will be there.
As I grow older I appreciate more the qualities not just as a father but as a unique spiritual being but when it comes down to it he will always be my Dad and I will always find comfort in his loving, supportive and artistic ways.
Here is a recent promo video of Doug working in his studio at Gun Lake