He’s been an instructor at Thompson Rivers University and a columnist for The Daily News, but the one thing David Charbonneau has wanted to do for more than anything else is paint portraits.
When he moved to Kamloops 30 years ago, Charbonneau created his own company, Thompson Studios, with the intention of doing just that.
But he said the town’s art scene was pretty much non-existent at the time, so he put his dreams on the shelf.
“Economically and artistically, it was really bad timing,” said Charbonneau.
Now retired, the arts community has aligned perfectly with Charbonneau’s three-decade obsession with painting. And he’s taken full advantage of the timing and opportunity.
The first exhibit of his work is on now at Caffee Motivo in North Kamloops (449 Tranquille Rd.) until the end of the October. Charbonneau has 24 of his paintings on display and is already working on several more.
Called the Ponder.Osa Collection, the paintings are reflective of whatever is on Charbenneau’s mind at the time.
“It’s such an eclectic collection of paintings. There’s no one theme,” he said, “People ask me what I paint about; I say ‘anything’.”
Mounted on the coffee shop’s walls are a variety of paintings — everything from a placenta to a self-portrait of Charbenneau and friend Hugh Jordan enjoying a coffee at Caffe Motivo, which they do every week.
Charbenneau got one of the baristas to take the picture, then went back to his studio and painted it. Since it’s been up in the coffee shop he’s had people come up him and say “Hey, that’s you!”
The paintings are up for auction on Facebook. People can search Thompson Studio group and go to the Ponder.Osa Collection to make a bid. The minimum bid is $50.
He paints at least an hour a day Sunday to Thursday, which means he’s completing a painting about every two weeks. At this rate, he hopes to have enough for a second show next year.
“It’s the only way to get things done,” he said.