Introduction
Testimonials

About Me


Tony Max


Early years.  

I was born legally blind because of cataracts.  I had only ten percent of normal vision.

I was enthusiastic about art, writing and music at an early age.  I could still see well enough to make art.

My blindness was cured by surgeries when I was a teenager, but as a result of the surgeries I contracted glaucoma in 1989 and have had three retinal detachments.

My vision is still impaired. I take eye drops daily and have frequent checkups with my ophthalmologist.



Artist Tony Max on a hike  Dolomite Pass, Alberta  
On a hike at Dolomite Pass, near the Banff-Jasper Highway, Alberta.
 

My art
Much of my art portrays the beauty of west coast, where I live, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Ariist Tony Mxx at Sechelt, British Columbia  
On the British Columbia coast, at Sechelt.
 


My art captures the beautiful and vivid aspects of nature, emphasizing harmonious colors, patterns and dramatic compositions.

Artist Tony Max in the 2000s.  
Tony Max
 

International artist
My art has been sold to art collectors in 24 countries, including Canada, the United States, Mexico, England, Scotland, Wales, France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Finland, Australia, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and Chile.


My prints and paintings have been sold in about 150 art galleries as well as 24 corporate and institutional collections.  They have also been represented by five art print publishing and/or distribution companies.


Artist Tony Max demonstrating a painting technique  
I'm demonstrating a painting technique here while holding a paint brush.
 

Education
I studied fine art for one year at Fanshawe College in my birth city of London, Ontario.  Realizing that I would be unfulfilled and unable to make a living by doing the kind of modern art that was encouraged there, I dropped out of the art program at the college after the first year.

Artist Tony Max between high school and art college age  

In 1977, soon before I became an art student.

 

Journalism

I moved to Toronto and enrolled in the journalism program at Ryerson University.
Artist Tony Max in 1997  

In 1997

 

Intertwining of pursuits
During some of my spare time as a journalism student, I began painting and silk screening some of my fine art images.  This intertwining of pursuits demonstrates my strong interests in both art and the written word.


When I was still a journalism student, I had my first group show (in 1980) at the now defunct Del Bello Gallery in Toronto, and (in 1981) my first solo show, also at the Del Bello Gallery.


I earned a bachelor of applied arts degree in journalism from Ryerson in 1981.


I became the managing editor and sole reporter and photographer at a chain of monthly, community newspapers in Toronto, was a writer and photographer for the employee magazines of two insurance companies, an editor for the provincial government and had other, similar jobs.
 

Among my career jobs, I've worked as a journalist, editor, corporate communications officer, photographer, computer typesetter, desktop publisher, illustrator, Web site creator, graphic artist, graphic designer and fine artist in Toronto and Vancouver.


For many years I was interested in all of those fields of written and visual endeavour.  I found it difficult to decide which career to devote myself to, and I frequently vacillated between fine art and some of those other vocations for a number of years.


Self-employed business communicator
In 1996 I founded Design Write Communications, a company that helps businesses to communicate clearly and effectively, through writing, editing, graphic design, photography and illustration.


In 2002, buoyed by the increasing popularity of my fine art, I quit the company  to become a full-time fine artist.

Artist Tony Max at Malaspina Galleries, Gabriola Island

On Gabriola Island, B.C.


Continuing education
During my early adult years, I took part-time courses at a variety of schools, including advertising layout at the Ontario College of Art, photography at the Banff School of Fine Arts and printmaking at Toronto's Open Studio.


But I consider myself to be mostly self-taught, having learned by experimenting on my own, reading books and magazines, investigating products at art supply stores, asking questions of various people, and more recently, researching on the Internet.


Tony-Max-Artist-at-Trout-Lake
Tony Max


Art media
For several years my preferred medium was heavy-body acrylics. I've also printed several serigraph (silkscreen) editions by hand.  Additionally, I've worked with traditional oils, water-mixable oils, watercolors, gouache, pastels, digital, pencils, pencil crayons, markers, pen and ink, stone lithography, etching, mezzotint, woodcut, airbrushing and fluid acrylics.

From about 2000 to 2011 I painted exclusively with water-mixable oil, but in 2011 I returned to heavy-body acrylics for my painting medium.

For my art prints, giclees (pronounced "she-glaze") are my preferred medium.



Advocate for rights
I advocate the rights of artists, art dealers, picture framers and art lovers to have giclees respected as an art medium, believing that the media used by artists should not be an issue.

I am also an advocate for fine artists to:

create their print editions in sizes of 500, 1,000 or more without being crucified for being greedy, unscrupulous and egotistical
* get fair licensing contracts from print publishers
* protect the copyright of their images

use digital technology without being discriminated against
try to make money from their art, so that artists have opportunities commensurate with the opportunities of workers in other creative fields, such as music, writing, acting and dance.




Avant garde art and artist
I was the first fine artist in Canada to create, publish and sell a suite of original, large giclees that I painted digitally from scratch using the Illustrator computer program. The suite of prints was exhibited by the head of the fine art department at the University of New Brunswick in 1995, to demonstrate to fine art students what was possible with digital technology. At the time, giclee printing was in its infancy.


I was one of the first desktop publishers and digital fine artists in Canada, starting in 1987 with a 128K Mac (the predecessor of the Mac Plus).


In 2000, I was one of the first professional artists in Canada to be commercially successful using water-mixable oil paints.


I am one of the few Canadian artists whose art prints were sold door-to-door. It happened under the auspices of a print distribution company called Annex Art, which operated with a small team of salesmen in Ontario and the Canadian Prairie provinces, selling limited edition, hand-pulled serigraphs by knocking on doors in the early 1980s.


I was an early adapter to the Internet, solely editing, designing, photographing, publishing and coding a fine art site starting in 1996. My current Web site – always a work in progress – now receives about 100,000 'hits' per year.


I have solely written, edited, designed, photographed and published a distinctive, professional art catalog with a unique style, for use in art galleries  (In 2011 I stopped updating the catalog, as the Internet became more popular, but for several years the catalog was a viable sales tool for me, and for the art galleries that represented my art, and for my retail customers.)


I'm one of the few fine artists in Canada with a background in professional graphic art, graphic design, illustration, photography, writing, editing, Web site creation and general computer and Internet skills (business communications, in other words). That suite of communications skills has given me an advantage at promoting my work.


I'm one of the few, full-time professional, veteran visual artists in Canada, with my own sole proprietorship. (My company name is Tony Max Art.)


Injury in addition to visual problems
In 1994, as a pedestrian in North Vancouver, I was struck by a car driven by a careless driver. I've suffered constant back and shoulder pain since then, despite a variety of treatment modalities, exercise regimens and approximately 200 medical visits. For a while, when I stopped chiropractic treatments, the pain was so severe that I could barely stand for more than five or ten minutes without serious pain. I have been getting chiropractic treatments regularly for several years, which have reduced the degeneration of my musculoskeletal system that was affected by the accident.



Currently
I've lived in North Vancouver since moving to British Columbia in 1987.
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