The Four C's of Wayne Westfall
By: the Jaywalker Gadabout
before Jaywalker was even a twinkle in the eyes of founders Tony West and
Jonathan VanHaaften, a wheeliferous southpaw could be found at Kingston street
corners sketching the moments with an eye-catching determination. I wanted to
stop and strike up a conversation with him many times, but did not wish to be
interloper to the intimate transaction between subject and page.
passed by, as did I, always finding that nameless fellow busy, or en route. Then
one day, while dropping by the Wellington Boutique for my regular artistic dim
sum, I was directed to some recently acquired prints by a local artist. The
first of many numbered cards, appropriately number one was of a person in a pose
I've come to recognize at some distance - the artist I now know as Wayne
Westfall (self-portrait, cover).
long last, I could actually see the pieces he was working on all those many
times. The intersections and coffee shops, the waterfront, the parks. I bought
the self-portrait without haste; it will grace the office walls
when frame finally meets painting. The rich blue in the image would bring to
mind the first of the four "C's" of Wayne Westfall - Colour. As I
perused the other prints, bright, lively colours leapt from the page, carrying
with them a spirituous, positive attitude.
little time, we'd arranged to meet at his home studio in a bright, airy
apartment attached to a century-old farmhouse in Kingston's
"fruit-belt", named for its intersection of Cherry and Plum streets.
(Under this nomenclature, however, it would better be named the
"fruit-and-nut belt", since Chestnut Street also puts in a small
me in with a warm smile and handshake, it was quick work to connect him to the
many images I'd found at the Wellington Boutique. Wayne's pleasant demeanor is
seen in every stroke of his pen, a caress of the page as much as of the subject.
As we entered, an inside-out view of the world unfolded: while a panoramic
window framed the calm backyard, a variety of active outdoor scenes lifted from
the walls inside. No mistaking it, this former mountain
the second "C" of Wayne Westfall, appeared all around me. From the
fireplace and its soothing heat (that seemed to draw Wayne in like a moth),
through to the watercolour of a man enjoying his coffee and newspaper on the
patio of Buka's. Comfort appeared vital to Wayne, with serenity and warmth
universal to his works, all the way from brushstroke to colour.
Finally, one may find Wayne's fourth "C" just below the surface of each artwork. Whether a painting of a family entering church together, or a man reading his newspaper, or Wayne himself working, there is an inescapable sense of Companionship. In nearly every painting, and in many of his hundreds of sketches, you will find some form of inseparable pair. This aspect fittingly reminds me of Wayne and his work, as it took me several years to find these two separated!
Westfall is developing his
"Art On Wheels" website.
Back to Jaywalker December 2003