11 x 17 poster, printed in black and red, 1984

In 1984, I was apprenticing at Bakersmith Graphics, where I had learnt to code a photo-typesetting machine* and operate a stat camera — essential tools of the time. My boss, educator, friend and career-starter, Rosanne Baker-Thornley, allowed me to use her equipment for peace activist posters. I applied the colour for the poster above with rubylith, transparent red adhesive film that was cut out from clear plastic to create the areas of colour, which was then photographed by the printer to make a plate. The red text and lines were applied to that layer of film as well, using a T-square and Olfa knife.

*Each font came on a different disk, clear letters on a black background. The characters that we coded — with appropriate sizing and spacing — were projected onto light-sensitive paper that came on rolls. It was spit out in long columns of photo paper, which we developed, cut and rolled onto artboard with hot wax, using blue-pencil guidelines (which didn't reproduce). We had to take care in handling the type disks, as one scratch could ruin it — and the studio would have to buy a new one for a couple hundred dollars or live with an M with a chip out of a serif.

8.5 x 14 poster printed on yellow paper, 1986

At the time, I was highly influenced by Kathe Kollwitz and Franz Masereel, masters of political art. No subtlety in the message here — with an ironic edge by emphaizing that the bomb that killed 80,000 people was called “Little Boy.” I still remember walking my dog when I was 13 and looking at the clear sky near the Robarts Library, half-expecting to see the contrails of nuclear missiles coming to destroy us. I knew how far my house was from the possible targets and what chances my chances of survival  were. The fear was real.

Against Cruise Testing

I was cleaning out an old portfolio and came across some posters that I designed for Against Cruise Testing, a peace group formed in the early 80s to protest the Canadian government’s decision to allow the testing of the U.S. cruise missile over Canadian soil.

Like many young people worried about the threat of a nuclear war, I became involved in the peace movement. As I apprenticed as a graphic designer and grew as an illustrator and cartoonist, I used those skills for this cause. This merging of graphic design and activism grew naturally out of my teenage passion for drawing political cartoons. In the nearly 40 years since, I have worked with many citizen groups organizing for the environment and social justice.


11 x 17 poster, 1985

I designed this poster for the second annual protest against cruise missle testing. Although these posters have no years (bad practise for historians), I was able to ascertain the dates.

Overview of Projects

Cane | FireBook Design

Greenbelt West CoalitionLogo and Graphic Support for NGO

Animal EyesBook Design

LearnedBook Design

Stop Idling TicketEnvironmental Activism

See yoU in GuelphDesign and Illustration

Duct-Taped RosesBook Cover

Pizza PiLogo Design

Hillside HomesideLogo Design

Jaywalking GuelphLogo Design

Guelph Film Festival 2020Illustration and Design

Book*hug PressBranding

TreeTrustLogo Design

The Better BallotEthical Elections Campaign

Dear Current OccupantBook Cover Design

PhantompainsBook Cover Design

Guelph MuseumsCommunications and Exhibit Design

Guelph DancePromotional Design

SuperJuicingBook Design

Art Gallery of GuelphLogo and Identity

Sol BeautyBranding

Hillside FestivalPromotion Design

Thomas VideoLogo Design

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