David Shkolny is an Edmonton-based artist specializing in soft pastel. Born in Pinawa, Manitoba, in 1969, David has spent most of his life in Alberta. David's art is collected internationally and is also represented in The Canada Council Art Bank. He graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1992.
I have been painting longer than I have actually painted. Meaning simply, that as I gazed out the window of the car as a young teenager, my mind always drifted into an imaginary canvas where I would attempt to solve the complexities of what lay before me, namely the prairie. This may have started even earlier. At the age of ten I was given a book about the prairie, "William Kurelek's Winter and Summer", and it was my first exposure to something I identified as art or simply painting. He got the colour right, that's what drew me in, but I also identified with the intimacy of nature that he expressed in his paintings - his work was populated with kids my age doing the sorts of things I might do, such as mucking about in a field in the spring as the ice thawed or catching small animals like frogs or killdeer. I didn't grow up on a farm, but I was close to the land.
There have been a great many influences since then, but what has remained is a steadfast love of prairie and paint.
For the past fifteen years, I have chosen soft pastel as my medium of choice. It affords me the pleasure of working rather quickly and allows a certain degree of experimentation and spontaneity, two ingredients I value highly.