Born in Donnacona, Quebec, John has had a lifelong interest in art. He graduated from the Sheridan College advertising program in Oakville, Ontario; starting a successful career in marketing and design and later founding an advertising firm. During these years, he would travel out west on ski trips, where he met Wendy Wacko at Mountain Galleries, Jasper. Thus began a long friendship and eventually John relocated west to join the Mountain Galleries team.
Years of working with colour, design and varied applications within the advertising field have laid a solid groundwork for John's painting. With a principle focus on portraiture, he seems to consistently capture the essence of the personalities he paints. With a style that varies from flat application of colour to vibrant knife painting and use of mixed media, he continues to grow in style and confidence with each new work.
London-based Canadian contemporary portrait artist Andrew Salgado calls Webster's new work "Strong", while veteran American artist Douglas Simonson recently remarked "nice use of warm shadows and cool lights... impressive and sensitively done... an overall sense of a confident, seasoned artist... as always, a clear presence and personality shining out from the painting. portraits really are your forte."
Surrounded by an amazing array of artist peers from his base in The Canadian Rockies, John's admirers continue to grow with works finding homes in Toronto, New York and Tokyo.
"My paintings start with a completely intuitive abstract play of colour, texture and forms with big neutral areas ‘disrupted’ by jarring complementary colours. Those vivid marks are designed to deliberately move you through the painting, often from one plane to the next. When I start, I don’t even know if the piece will be portrait or landscape in format - it just suggests what it should be and essentially evolves into a bear, or goat, a barn or a portrait.
In the US, John A. Reed wrote a book and toured a show of paintings entitled ‘Disrupted Realism’ which very much resonated with what I’ve been feeling and seeing in contemporary art. A great example would be Christian Hook of Gibraltar, who does beautiful dreamy works combining hyper-realism with big swaths of beautiful disruptive colour in arresting compositions. Influences such as these, layered over 10 years of growth bring me to the work I’m doing today, which depict the disruptions mankind is making on the natural world around us.
This process is as exciting as painting has ever been for me, and these works are as straight-from-the-heart as anything I’ve ever done.”