Shayne Lloyd remembers the exact moment he decided on the design for his first wood burning piece. He was sitting around a campfire with some friends, carving a spoon, and dreamed up a concept for a coffee table made out of discarded wood pallets.
“I laminated a table out of old pallets and burned an octopus on top,” recalls the Port Alberni artist. “A friend of mine made the base and I sold it to my aunt.”
His art has come a long way since then: he knows not to work with such hard wood. And he knows he enjoys taking something that already exists, refinishing it and transforming it with pyrography.
Lloyd’s exhibit, Past, Present and Future, The Various Works of Shayne Lloyd, is at the Rollin Art Centre gallery. Lloyd will host a reception at the Rollin Art Centre this Saturday, April 19 from 1–3 p.m.
Lloyd’s home is sprinkled with reclaimed treasures, such as a chest of drawers and a solid wood telephone table that he and his wife Ileana Indelicato-Lloyd have rescued and restored.
He has sold other furniture restored and decorated with his wood burning; the first big piece he did once he moved to Port Alberni from the greater Victoria area was a cabinet depicting a humpback whale.
Although Lloyd has a regular job working as a bank teller with RBC Royal Bank, and he and Ileana have a 22-month-old daughter at home, art is a constant for him. He has painted panoramas on saw blades, made architectural drawings and family portraits. He’s created a graphic novel and a cartoon strip called Chicken Strips.
He has also started a series of pencil and pen sketches of heritage pieces and machinery around the Alberni Valley, with an eye to create a coffee table book with his drawings.
Mostly self-taught, with some life drawing training courtesy of the animation program at the Vancouver Institute of Media Arts, Lloyd says he is also inspired by the work of American underground cartoonist Robert Crumb.
After his mother died when Lloyd was 25, he began to think of his own mortality and what kind of mark he wanted to leave with his art.
“I need to make an impression,” he said.
“Money goes like that. Names are often forgotten. But the art could potentially be around for 100 years, 200 years. And I like that about art,” he said.
“This is me. I don’t want to be half-assed. I want to be genuine.
“I just want to leave behind great art.”
Past, Present and Future, The Various Works of Shayne Lloyd is on until May 8 at the Rollin Art Centre. The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The gallery is wheelchair accessible.