on April 13, 2017 by test_editor in April, Archive_2017, Print Articles, Comments Off on April 13, 2017: Meet the Editor; Artist, potter and word-wrangler.

April 13, 2017: Meet the Editor; Artist, potter and word-wrangler.

April 13, 2017: Meet the Editor;
Artist, potter and word-wrangler.

By Anna Borris.

Tim Thibeault with his Nikon camera and jaunty beret, is a familiar and much loved figure in Hintonburg. The archives of Newswest are full of his photos documenting our various festivals, new businesses, fundraisers, road construction and much of the local action.

Since the spring of 2014 he has been Newswest’s editor, fielding inquiries, encouraging contributors and helping shape the various contributions into an informative, entertaining and easy-reading community record.

Tim is a maritimer, born in Windsor Nova Scotia. While he was a still a child, his family moved west and for a time lived in a rural Aylmer, Quebec.

Country living instilled in Tim an enduring love of nature and astronomy. Tim and his three brothers and two sisters had a wild and lovely time in the country, riding horses, and running through woods and fields. The fragrance of his mom’s cinnamon rolls wafting down the long lane as he ran home from school is a happy memory and he has since become an expert cinnamon roll baker.

As a youngster he also started hitchhiking to school, trying to beat the school bus home. He has since hitchhiked across Canada three times and through western Europe once.

In the mid 1960s Tim’s family moved “into town”, to Ottawa’s west end where he attended Champlain High School. An encouraging French teacher inspired his passionate interest in language and culture. He is now the only member of his Acadian family who is fluently bilingual.

After high school, Tim developed an interest in skydiving and over the next few years jumped thirty-nine times. As a fund raiser for Canada’s National Skydiving Team, he wrote the satirical “Canadian Skydiver’s Colouring Book” and in the mid 1970s served as illustrator, and later editor, of Canadian Parachutist Magazine.

It was through skydiving that Tim made two new friends, Kay Walker and Marguerite Finn, who later became his partners in Hintonburg’s first pottery shop. The three opened Crossroads Canadian Fine Crafts at Wellington and Holland in March 1973. Over the years their business was very successful and their pieces were shipped worldwide to every continent except Antarctica.

In 1987 Tim began teaching continuing education pottery classes at Ottawa Technical High School. Currently he runs “Kids Create,” a Saturday morning kids’ art experience at the Hintonburg Community Centre where registration for every session fills up like magic.

He teaches art and pottery at the two Nepean Arts Centres, as well as running a digital camera workshop at HCC. During the summer Tim runs art camps delighting kids with his childlike sense of fun and amazement. He has done work for the Ottawa Archives, the Canadian Museum of Civilization and does picture framing at a professional level.

An admirer of the work of Vincent Van Gogh, in 1990 he flew to Europe for the Amsterdam exhibition commemorating the 100th anniversary of Van Gogh’s death.

He landed in Brussels and hitchhiked to Paris to arrive “overland” as Van Gogh had. His planned four days in Paris turned quickly into six weeks, part of which he spent at the famous Shakespeare & Co. bookstore where owner George Whitman introduced him as the shop’s “writer in residence”.

Tim is a man of many interests and pursuits. He is a kind friend, a generous brother and a hilarious entertainer. (Did I mention that he plays guitar and sings?) With his ready wit and sense of humour, maybe one day Yuk Yuk’s will be introducing him as their newest standup comic, who knows? For now, he wrestles with punctuation and grammar as Newswest’s editor and claims to be happy stomping on exclamation points, shuffling commas and squeezing under deadlines.

Man with white close cropped beard in leather jacket, cap and blue collar shirt

Man about town.

Photo Caption: Potter, photographer, art instructor and Newswest editor, Tim Thibeault has been a fixture in Ottawa’s west end since 1965. Photo courtesy of Anna Borris.

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