Drawn to art as a young adult, as part of his personal recovery from being an orphan on the streets of Calgary escaping an abusive single parent, (his father died early of lung cancer at age 40) he studied drawing and painting with his narcissist dope buddy Gary Ripley in Calgary, Alberta from 1972 till 1980. The focus of Jerald’s research was the materials and techniques of the old renaissance masters. He was devastated by Ripley’s typical narcissist cycle of overvaluing, undervaluing, dumping then smearing, almost committing suicide and not returning to art or music-making for 10 years following.
He eventually recovered from dope, cigarettes, yoga/religion, sugar and the constant criticism of narcissist men and women specifically and overindulgence in feel-good behaviours, in general, using the techniques of REBT.
Jerald went on to receive his diploma in painting from the Alberta College of Art and Design where at age 40 he began studying studio art from 1992 to graduation in 1996. Having three times achieved the President’s Honour Roll he went on to earn his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1998 from the Alberta University of the Arts with a specialty in digital art studies influenced by Alan Dunning and a minor in creative writing influenced by Suzette Meyr.
He earned a certificate in Adult Education from Mount Royal University while teaching there and at the Alberta University of the Arts. He volunteered at several long-term care homes as a recreational therapist through art-making, specializing with those with Huntington’s disease and other disorders of the brain while married to a Huntington’s sufferer.
These art and recovery strategies coincided with his first career as a street addictions counsellor for the Alberta Alcohol and Drug Abuse Commission where he was trained in REBT, Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, developed by Dr. Albert Ellis the foremost psychologist of the last century. Recovery isn’t instant or easy for anyone from anything.
Jerald’s current work draw’s heavily from the history and traditions of Western European fine art, street photo, digital debauchery and psychotherapy. He exhibits images professionally on the net with Photographize after experimentally testing image strategies through Flikr and sells the final results through Fine Art America.
He currently lives independently doing stroke recovery, practicing his art/music/video making in his inner-city neighbourhood of Calgary, Alberta.