2 Vista Humber Drive,
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M9P 3R7,
* Go to the "ART" page to be linked to over 2,000 of Ian's paintings, digital art and photos.
* Go to the "BOOKS" page for information on his 3 novels and his forthcoming book on self-directed investing:
- BEWARE THE ABANDONED
- USING DROUGHT USA
- INVESTORS VS SHARKS
The day, I finished my last exam in my final year of
university, I had $100 left in my bank account and no job to go to. Quickly, I
packed all my possessions in my small suitcase and hitchhiked the 280 miles to the northern mining town I had grown up in. I had been employed there by a mining company as
a laborer for the three previous summers. Without being able to labor each summer in that filthy, deafening,
stinking environment I would not have been able to pay for my university
When I arrived, at what I considered to be my home, I was
asked, “What are you doing here. You are
a university graduate.” After explaining
that I was broke, my mother said she would talk to my father. She soon returned and told me that he would allow me to stay for three months.
Being brought up in an Anglo-Scottish working-class family,
I had understood, at a very young age, that I was expected to be independently
making my own way in life as soon as it was possible. My father had commenced full time work at sixteen when his father had died. The meager amount he was able to make was
necessary to help raise his four younger siblings.
Those three months flew by quickly. I now had my stake. It
was time to strike out. I had no plan or ambition in mind. With two new suits
in my new bigger suitcase I took the train to the big city.
A few days later, I was sent by a placement agency to a large, international company called Dun & Bradstreet. I
had no idea what they did. The placement agency knew I wanted a job that would allow me to wear a suit, white
shirt and tie and be as far away as possible from the noise, filth and stink of
a mine. They assured me that D&B would match these essential qualifications.
I was not disappointed. I had my own desk in a long row of
desks and chairs. Each morning I was sent
out to ask eleven business owners questions about their companies. Each afternoon I transformed what I had been
told into commercial credit reports for unknown, mysterious readers. I fully expected to do this for the rest of
my life - just as my father had labored in the mine for his entire life. My father was shocked when he learned that despite being a university graduate, wearing a suit, white shirt
and tie, I was now making less money than I had been making in the mine.
My naive, lifetime as a credit reporter was not to be. It seemed I had a buried competitive streak
that drove me to be the best reporter among the fifty or so reporters who were
rated every day on the quantity and quality of their work. I was a genuinely surprise when six months later I was selected to take on a position managing a small department.
A Dozen promotions followed as I was given more and more
challenges and responsibilities. At twenty-five I was national general manager
of a division. Titles like regional manager, general sales manager, vice
president, senior vice president and president subsequently became attached to
my name at D&B, Equifax, Creditel and Drake International. My recognition as an expert in commercial risk assessment and commercial asset recovery was established. The ability to manage large sales forces, create profitable new products and compete successfully against large international organizations was richly rewarded.
My wife, children and grandchildren have further broadened my
ability to understand and cope with life.
The financial rewards I realized allowed me to meet interesting people, travel the world and immerse
myself in environments that I would never have experienced if I had not left
that mining town.
What an exciting, interesting journey it has been. I liked writing credit reports. As an executive, I liked writing business plans,
instructions, advertising and correspondence.
I now like writing fiction and non-fiction books. The books allow me to incorporate decades of observations,
unusual experiences and research into my stories. My objective is to entertain
and open the minds of readers to ideas and insights they may never have
While I was being consumed by my "career", I was also always producing art work. As a child, my parents had discouraged me from pursuing a career in art. They drummed into me that "artists were a dime-a-dozen with little chance of financial security". Thus, it is something that I have always liked to do, but not something that I had to do. I create images that interest and excite me. Most of my work now is digital art, working on the same laptop that I write my novels on. To me, creating digital art is so much easier, faster and exciting than painting. The 4 foot by 5 foot canvases that can be produced, by my distributor Fine Art America, are just as impressive as the ones I used to paint....IAN