Chad Budyk graduated from the University of Manitoba in 2000 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts. He majored in drawing and minored in photography. He worked in a few areas associated with the arts but was never able to make it on art alone.
In 2006, Chad followed his heart out to Calgary with his love (that’s me). He decided he needed another career to support his passion for art. He did a 180 and followed his second passion, fitness, to do a degree in Personal Training at the University of Mount Royal.
He worked as a coach and dabbled in art until he had our two beautiful children and art took a back seat to support the family.
With the onset of the pandemic, Chad found his gym closed and more time at home. With our children older now, Chad was able to dive back into his first love of art. Since then he has been revisiting old techniques and exploring new ones. He does portraiture, contemporary, watercolor, acetone, and dabbles in other areas that pique his interest. He also does commissions.
He has now found the perfect balance between art, fitness, and family.
– Written by his wife
Which ‘hood are you in?
My wife and I both grew up in Winnipeg. We moved to Calgary in ’06 for work. We call Edgemont home in the NW and love our ‘hood. Short drives downtown, work, and out of the city. Our kids have several friends right next door. It’s perfect for our lifestyle.
What do you do?
As a career, I’ve worked to become an award-winning strength and conditioning coach training some of the best athletes in the world. As for art I pretty much go around like a leaf in a wind storm. I try to make whatever catches my eye. Emulating other artists and their styles, or a pose or a subject matter is how I seem to interact with the world. For me it’s not enough to sit back and admire a piece, I want to try to remake it, or put my own spin on it. I want to get involved in the work somehow. Sometimes it’s a painting or drawing, other times a photograph or even a particular pose or form that catches my eye.
Drawing has always been special for me and it acts as my anchor, or my true north or whatever. There is something about involving myself with the subject as I draw it, often feeling more like sculpture than mark-making. I build value on my drawings from the lightest lights to the darkest darks and as I flesh out the work it’s like modeling a physical object. I think that’s what pulls me toward figurative drawing and portraiture, forming a soft 3D subject on a 2D surface like graphite clay.
What are you currently working on?
Whatever flies into my little noggin. Lately, I’ve been experimenting with combining multiple layers of subject drawn overtop of each other and then backed up with a design-inspired flat background. The idea is to create a sort of dissonance between the realism and three-dimensionality of the form and the flat geometric designs of the background; forcing the eye to work not just to see each form on its own but to also separate it from the background. I’ve been struggling to just leave unadorned forms on the page all on their lonesome, it’s begun to look unfinished to me.
Since the pandemic took hold I found myself with a little extra time on my hands and so took up watercolour painting. It’s a struggle to reconcile the loose and haphazard nature of watercolour with my tight and controlled inclinations. But as I’ve continued to wage war with the medium I’ve found a nice balance of using watercolour to add a colourful dimension to my normally black and white mark-making. During that time I’ve also started experimenting with alcohol inks and contemporary abstraction; again it wars with the part of my brain that wants everything to be neat and tidy. Experimenting with these mediums is as much about learning new ways of making art as it is about working breaking the barriers in my mind on how I myself create art.
Where can we find your work?
My work can be viewed and purchased through my website chadbudyk.com, on instagram @chadbudyk.art and I’ve just started dipping my toes into this thing the kids call TikTok under the same handle chadbudyk.art.