MY LOOK: Kate Klenavic

This article originally appeared in the Nov/Dec print edition of Ottawa Magazine

Kate_Klevanic_FINAL-2_MG_7079-Edit

Kate Klenavic is wearing the Rouched Marigold Coat by Tracy Reese and Sam Edelman boots. Tights and dress are from Wilfred; earrings and gloves are Etsy finds. Photo: Andrew Carson

How would you describe your personal style?
As a chef, I have to be pretty functional, but I also switch from kitchen to floor a lot — as catering chef for The Whalesbone, I supervise the kitchen but also interact with event guests. So it’s a mix of functionality and style. Ballet flats are good for instantly making a look chic. Booties are great because they look like you’re wearing heels but you’re not. And black. I wear a lot of black. Off-site, I’m usually in cook’s clothing, but that can be tricky because halfway through the day, I might have to meet a client. Then I slip on ballet flats and a bracelet, and I’m good to go. Blazers are also a super way to easily transform an outfit.

Does your own style affect the way you present the food?
It definitely does. My style can be trendy, and things in the catering world change often. Plus, I see a lot of the same people at different events. So I’m always looking on Pinterest and reading magazines for ways to present food while still keeping the food delicious. These days I use a lot of wood accents and stainless steel. Brown paper bags are great because they’re so simple and functional. And mid-century is coming back in style, so that style of glassware is both hipster cool and old-school cool, so it appeals to different groups, which is especially good at weddings, where you see grandparents and young people. These days I do a lot of the event styling too, so it’s about combining your personal vision for the event with that of the client and finding a good balance between the two. In the end, I always feel good food should look like you want to eat it and not like a piece of art — a little bit rustic, a little bit messy.

Read the rest of this story »

Q&A: Chief concerns over sacred site in Gatineau

BY STEPHEN DALE

This article was originally published in the Nov/Dec 2014 print edition of Ottawa Magazine

Sacred_005

Algonquin off-reserve chief Roger Fleury at the sacred site before the City of Gatineau arrested the occupiers. Photo: David Kawai

Earlier this year, the discovery of ancient artifacts on land near the Chaudière Falls in Gatineau prompted First Nations activists to occupy the site, which is slated for redevelopment. Given the findings, some people want the city to put the brakes on the $43-million project. Algonquin off-reserve chief Roger Fleury was among the occupiers arrested in September for refusing to leave. Before his arrest, Fleury spoke about why this discovery is important and why First Nations people want more say in the future of the area.

Read the rest of this story »

Throwback Thursday: Chief John deHooge

RON CORBETT

Chief deHooge, Julie Oliver, 2010

Ottawa’s newly retired fire chief, John deHooge. Photo: Julie Oliver, 2010

On Monday, the city’s fire Chief, Jon deHooge, announced his retirement — he’d been on the job for five years. His retirement was planned before the launch of a new strategic plan coming in the new year. “I thought it best that a new fire chief build and take ownership of that,” deHooge told the Ottawa Citizen.

Five years ago, Ottawa Magazine‘s Ron Corbett took a look at the then new fire chief — including his qualifications and experience, which were largely ignored. Instead, the focus was on the chief’s lack of French language skills — something that, though he took lessons, he was, he admits, unable to become fluent in by the time he retired. But given his accomplishments, was all that controversy really merited?

These thoughts and others come to mind as we return to that moment, five years ago, just as deHooge was donning the all-important helmet.

fire2

Newly retired Ottawa fire chief John deHooge speaking in 2010 to Alex Davey (right) and Ken Walton (left). Julie Oliver, 2010

 

This article originally appeared in April/May 2010 Ottawa Magazine print edition. 

Ask any firefighter how their department stacks up against the other two branches of Ottawa’s emergency services — the cops and the paramedics — and you’ll immediately get an earful about firefighters being the poor cousin. You’ll hear how they went nearly five years without a contract, negotiating with a stingy city hall that didn’t seem to have any sense of urgency — and can you imagine such a thing ever happening to the cops? You’ll hear about shrinking revenue, old fire trucks, and the constant threat of station closures.

And who gets all the media coverage? Don’t even get the firefighter started! It seems you can’t pick up a newspaper or turn on the radio without hearing from Vern White, high-profile chief of the Ottawa Police Service, or getting an update from paramedic chief Anthony Di Monte on the effort to get more paramedics on the streets. In contrast, the former Ottawa fire chief — who held the job for nine years — was seen so rarely in public that his nickname was Bigfoot. Rick Larabie, who retired last May, rarely spoke to the media about anything other than smoke detectors.

I was thinking about all this the other day — cursing under my breath and thinking how appropriate — as I drove in circles trying to find Fire Station 1. Fire Station 1 also happens to be the headquarters of Ottawa Fire Services. But I couldn’t find it. Missed it once, with the address sitting right next to me on the passenger seat. Then missed the parking lot on the second go-round. Bigfoot, it seems, had designed a well-hidden lair. (Fire Station 1, for the record, is on Carling Avenue, butt joint to the Queensway, just past Kirkwood, on a tight curve where you take your life in your hands if you turn into the fire station or even take a second to notice it.)

I finally parked the car and walked up to the front entrance, only to discover that it was closed for renovations. A handwritten sign directed me around the corner. Fenced service depots are easier to get into than the headquarters of Ottawa Fire Services, it seems. As I turned to start walking, a car pulled into the parking lot — a candy-apple red Dodge Charger. Behind the wheel was a heavy-set man with short-clipped grey hair. He stepped out of the car and rose to an impressive height, then pushed back a pair of blue-framed eyeglasses. I remember thinking, Well, the new chief looks a little different.

Last December the City of Ottawa announced that, after a seven-month search, it had hired a new fire chief. The man getting the nod was John deHooge, the fire chief from Waterloo. DeHooge was 53, a career firefighter with 25 years of service at the Oakville fire department, where he rose to the rank of deputy chief, before joining the City of Waterloo in 2004. On paper, he’s perfect. He has a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Western Ontario and is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs. He has won many awards for his professional and charitable work, particularly with muscular dystrophy, the charity of choice for firefighters since the heyday of the Jerry Lewis Telethon. He beat 300 other applicants and was referred to glowingly as “the best candidate for the job” by Diane Deans, chair of the city’s community and protective services committee, when the city councillor introduced him at a press conference last year.

But, this being Ottawa, none of the news organizations led with any of this information. Instead, the coverage concentrated on deHooge’s lack of French skills. (CBC was perhaps the most direct with this information, headlining its online story Ottawa Hires Fire Chief Who Doesn’t Speak French.) The stories then quoted the chief, who said he planned to learn French. Councillor Georges Bédard weighed in, defending the choice but expressing concern  about the policy that allowed such a hiring to take place, while Councillor Jacques Legendre said he found it difficult to accept the notion that the city could not find a qualified bilingual candidate in Canada.

Still, when the dust settled, deHooge was still the new fire chief and most of the media had missed the bigger story. After years of perceived neglect by the city — and with morale in the fire service running as low as a lure skipping along the bottom of a lake — is John deHooge the man to turn things around? “I think,” says Ottawa Professional Fire Fighters Association president Peter Kennedy dryly, “that those issues are a little more important than what the media has focused on so far.”

I stand in the parking lot, waiting for deHooge. I have seen his photo in the newspaper. You can’t mistake the man. Too big. The glasses too obvious. When he sits back down in his car to make a phone call, I move on and make my way to the makeshift entrance to the Ottawa Fire Service, which turns out to be a locked employee entrance. I have to knock on the door and wait for someone to let me in. I try to imagine the front door of the police station ever being locked.

When deHooge catches up to me, his cellphone is back in his pocket and he is carrying a stylish leather briefcase. He walks right up to me.

“Ron?”

“Chief deHooge. Pleased to meet you.”

I inspect the man. He’s the poster child for the expression “barrel-chested.” Within his chest could be stored enough provisions for a two-week canoe trip. Yet he isn’t a hulking man. The face is still youthful, the eyes are bemused, and the glasses are a playful touch — one that keeps you guessing about him.

“We can go right to the office,” he says, and I follow him up the stairs.

“Excuse the mess. I don’t really know what is going on yet.” DeHooge has been on the job for less than two weeks, and when we enter the office, a secretary is waiting to show him the new printer on his desk. It’s about the size of a lunar capsule. You can see the chief’s disappointment.

“That’s it?”

“Yes, I’m afraid so,” says the secretary. “Rather large, isn’t it?” Then she looks around and says helpfully, “Maybe we can put it on the bookcase behind you.” Okay — or maybe we can give it its own parking spot.

“Well, we’ll work it out, I’m sure,” says deHooge as he removes his overcoat. Now he’s standing in front of me in his fire-chiefs’ whites. Like a naval officer on parade. Maybe the middle linebacker on the old navy football team.

I quickly survey the room. Like the offices of many successful men, it is bursting with memorabilia. There is a photo of the 1948 pumper that deHooge helped restore while in Oakville. A lot of money was needed for that project, and he helped raise every cent. In the photo, deHooge is standing proudly beside the machine. Here is a muscular dystrophy poster from the mid-1980s featuring an image of deHooge with a large, bushy moustache and wearing a wet firefighters’ slicker — so perfect, you could imagine that the poster designers had called central casting for a firefighter and deHooge showed up. There are citations and awards and medals for meritorious service. In a glass display case are scale-model fire trucks, a few looking old and perhaps expensive. The room is a shrine to firefighting (the personal photos — wife, two grown children — are kept near the desk), and it seems a shame to leave, but deHooge has booked a boardroom for us.

John deHooge, photo Julie Oliver, 2010

Road Warrior: newly retired Ottawa fire chief, John deHooge, poses atop his Harley — the firefighters edition. The fire chief originally wanted to be a cop, but changed his mind when a retiring police officer told him that if he could do it over again, he would become a firefighter. Photo: Julie Oliver, 2010

As we’re leaving, I notice a framed citation and photo in the corner of the office. There is an emblem in the frame, as well — silver wings with the words “Los Silverados” underneath. When I look more closely, I see deHooge sitting on a Harley-Davidson Road King motorcycle. “Oh, that,” says deHooge, already marching out the door and down the hallway. “I belong to a bike club.”

If Rick Larabie ever belonged to anything, it remains a mystery. Bike club, though, would not be your first guess.

“He likes his Harley-Davidson, that’s for sure,” says Mike Noonan, vice-president of the Waterloo Professional Fire Fighters Association. “It’s the firefighters’ edition of the bike. I don’t know if he’s told you that.” The fire service, adds Noonan, is very important to deHooge. “I would go so far as to call him a fire nerd.”

If people in the nation’s capital are wondering what sorts of changes will take place at the Ottawa Fire Service under a new chief, Noonan can provide some clues. He worked closely with deHooge on many charity events and says that in the five years deHooge was chief, he might have missed “two events, maximum.”

One of the most popular events the fire department ran was an idea deHooge brought with him from Oakville. Called the Civilian Academy, it allows average citizens to become firefighters for the day. Members of the public can operate the jaws of life, enter a burning building — even drive the fire truck. Noonan remembers debating the chief on this last point. “I was absolutely opposed to that idea,” he remembers. “I didn’t think it was a good idea, having people drive the truck without any training. But John believed that we needed to do it. And he was right. It’s the most popular part of the event.”

And if the new chief plans to be a more visible figure around Ottawa, no one would be happier than the head of the firefighters’ union. “You see [Ottawa police chief] Vern White in the newspaper every other day. He keeps the police service in the forefront of the community,” says Kennedy. “The fire service, though, is almost invisible and has been for years.”

The relationship between union and management could be another thing to change under deHooge. That relationship has been rancorous since amalgamation. Grievances are a regular part of the workday. In contrast, no grievances were filed against the fire department during deHooge’s entire tenure in Waterloo. DeHooge can’t take all the credit for that (people can’t actually remember the last time a grievance was filed in Waterloo), but his open-door, talk-to-me way of doing the job certainly kept the streak going.

“John was just a delight to work with,” says Brenda Halloran, mayor of Waterloo. “He was professional, courteous, has a great sense of humour. If you can’t get along with John, then you have a problem.”

Diane Deans says this reputation was one of the reasons the city hired the man. “He is very outgoing, very personable, and he has a track record of fostering good relationships in the community and in the workplace,” she comments. “We thought we needed to make a change in that area.”

The boardroom at the Ottawa Fire Service is a drab room with industrial-looking furniture, chalkboards on the walls, and what looks like an Electrohome TV-VCR combo sitting in a corner. The brightest thing in the room might be deHooge’s glasses.

For the next hour, we talk about his hopes and aspirations for the job. The Ottawa Fire Service has a five-year strategic plan that has yet to go before City Council. That’s his first job. “A lot of work to do there,” he says. After the strategic planning, he hopes “on a go-forward basis” to work on “engaging and collaborating” with members of the Ottawa Professional Fire Fighters Association. He wants to create an environment of “mutual trust and respect” between management and union. (He may be a firefighters’ firefighter, but deHooge often talks like the graduate of a public administration course, which he also is.) We talk briefly about his language skills. (“I will learn French. I have already asked some of my staff to start speaking to me in French.”)

We talk about his background. He was brought up in Toronto and was originally going to be a cop but changed his mind when a retiring police officer told him that if he had to do it all over again, he would become a firefighter. “A large part of a cop’s job is enforcement,” explains deHooge.

“A firefighter’s job, when you get right down to it, is to help people out of a jam. The old cop told me he would have enjoyed that more.” So he became a firefighter, joining the Oakville Fire Department shortly after high school. He was trained on the job. All his degrees and certificates also came while he was working. He is a “lifelong learner” and proud of the fact.

He has a grown son, who’s a firefighter in Mississauga, and a stepson attending Carleton University. His wife, Heather deHooge, fostered guide dogs for the blind and was excited to learn that the Canadian National Institute for the Blind has a kennel and training facility in Manotick.

As for the Harley, yes, it’s the firefighters’ edition. The company started making them in 2003, and deHooge bought one the same year. Have to be a firefighter to own one. No wannabes. “I love being on a bike,” he says. “I rode a lot when I was younger, and now I’m getting back into it. At 53.

That’s the prime of your life, right?” It doesn’t really seem like a question, so I just nod.

Phone around and ask about John deHooge — do it for a day or two — and you’ll walk away with the firm belief that there are about to be big-time changes at the Ottawa Fire Service.

The president of the union describes him as “a breath of fresh air” and then almost gushes about the man. Gushing is something Peter Kennedy has rarely been known to do.

The mayor of Waterloo still seems heartbroken to have lost him. (Mayor Halloran provides my favourite deHooge description. “He is a man of manly stature,” says Her Worship.)

Diane Deans almost gloats that she got him. “The best candidate for the job,” she says. Then she goes on quickly to say: “He’s a snappy dresser. He has some style. He really is an interesting man.” Deans also says the city is happy to have a more extroverted person in the fire chief job.

So how much of a profile will the new chief have in the community? He has some stiff competition, with Vern White and Anthony Di Monte already out there. Both men have become media favourites. And both have a running start on deHooge, who is still finding his way around the city. Still, those who know him have no doubt he will make his presence felt. And quickly.

“Have you seen his car?” Mike Noonan asks me near the end of our interview. “You’re talking about his motorcycle, but have you seen his car?”

“The red Dodge Charger, right?”

“That’s right. Everyone in Waterloo knew that car. You know why?”

“No.”

“Because he kept red emergency lights in the back seat. He’d slap them on the roof anytime there was a fire call.”

“He’d show up at the fire in a Dodge Charger?”

“With lights a-flashin’‚” says Noonan.

Get ready, Ottawa.

PROFILES: Arctic inspires new art by Leslie Reid

This article first appeared in the Winter 2014 issue of Ottawa Magazine, as part of a series of stories about Ottawa’s connections to the Far North .

By PAUL GESSELL

LeslieReid

Ottawa artist Leslie Reid is pictured with one of the first works, Llwewellyn 59°05’N; 133°56’W, which is based on her photo of the terminus, or tongue, of the Llewellyn Glacier in the Juneau Icefield. Photo by Dwayne Brown

Leslie Reid’s paintings, whether of pastoral Calumet Island or foggy Newfoundland, have always been more about emotion than landscape. That is to say, the sense of loss or tranquility or mortality is more important than the hazy images of lakes and trees the Ottawa artist harvests from photographs.

“Although she has always worked from photographs, her intention has never been photographic objectivity,” says Diana Nemiroff, who curated a Reid retrospective at Carleton University Art Gallery in 2011. “What interests her are the perceptual and psychological sensations provoked by the experience of a particular place.”

So when Reid spent nearly three weeks in August 2013 hopscotching around the Arctic with the military, the retired University of Ottawa art professor was, in essence, seeking emotions provoked by aerial views of glaciers, mountains, rivers — not to mention the effects of climate change on these landscape features — that she could put on canvas. Those Arctic scenes and emotions culled from 11,400 kilometres of air travel will form a body of work called Mapping Time for exhibitions next year in Ottawa and Montreal.

Reid on a walk to the shore of the Northwest Passage at Resolute on Cornwallis Island. Photo courtesy Leslie Reid

Reid on a walk to the shore of the Northwest Passage at Resolute on Cornwallis Island. Photo courtesy Leslie Reid

Some of those emotions provoked by the North are the “psychological sensations,” to use Nemiroff’s term, derived from Reid’s appreciation of the experiences of her late father, an air force pilot. She had a “difficult” relationship with her father, who died at 44 — half a century ago, when Leslie was still a teenager — their differences unresolved.

Squadron Leader John “Jack” Reid flew DC-3s around the Arctic in the 1940s while a military photographer captured the scenes below. The nine-by-nine-inch prints from those forays are stored in the National Air Photo Library on Booth Street. Reid, the daughter, is using those old photos, as well as her own, to help craft the paintings in Mapping Time. In many ways, Reid was following in her late father’s footsteps last year courtesy of the Canadian Forces Artists Program, which allows artists to have ringside seats at military activities for a few weeks at a time. She said she was not expecting the trip to “resolve” the troubled relationship with her father but that she hoped “family history” would be one of the lenses through which she viewed the Arctic. Reid seems reluctant to say much about her “mercurial” father but offered this: “When he was away, he loved me dearly. It’s when he was at home I wasn’t so sure.”

After her trip, Reid fed dozens of her digital photographs into a Flickr website as a gift of sorts to the pilots, rangers, and other military personnel who facilitated her magical mystery tour. Nancy Baele, former art critic for the Ottawa Citizen, saw the Flickr images and sent Reid an email. “They are amazing,” wrote Baele. “Some of the landscapes seem as though they are paintings you have done. But what kept going through my mind was the question: How will you distil the human and landscape, both so haunting, so inextricably intertwined, sublime, so earthly, so earthy? … It is the artist’s task to give all these sensations, thoughts, and intimations form … Lucky we have you.”

Read the rest of this story »

FOUND: Ritchie’s silos a shrine to city’s agricultural history

BY ROGER BIRD

This article was originally published in the October 2014 print edition of Ottawa Magazine as part of a series of three colourful workspaces in Ottawa.

Four giant, grey, concrete silos facing Highway 417 in the east end are a monument to the city’s agricultural history. Photo by Jackson Couse

The Monument
On the eastern approaches to Ottawa stands a 20-metre-high monument to the city’s agriculture: four giant grey concrete silos facing Highway 417, with a sign on the side that reads Ritchie Feed & Seed Inc. Each of these silos on Windmill Lane can hold about 1,000 tonnes of corn, with comparable amounts for lightweight grains such as barley or wheat. Beside them, a larger white structure looks like a cluster of giant cylinders crammed together. For decades, if you were a dairy cow, horse, chicken, pig, or sheep, this larger cluster was where lunch was made. Cereal crops, along with vitamins, gluten, salt, and antibiotics, were ground, mixed, soaked, and forced through a device called an extruder to form feed pellets for livestock across the city of Ottawa, the province, and northeastern U.S. states.

Lessons of the land
The “city” in the city of Ottawa consists of about 500 square kilometres of streets, houses, pavement, office buildings, shopping malls, and parking lots. Then there’s 200 square kilometres that make up the greenbelt. But inside city limits, almost 950 square kilometres of Ottawa land is in use for agriculture — that’s more than a third of the city. This paradox is audible on Windmill Lane in early spring. Neill Ritchie of Ritchie Feed & Seed is on the phone handling a call about some soon-to-be-shipped baby chickens, turkeys, and Peking ducks. “Do you want them at the same time? We won’t know until they show up whether they’ve been sexed.” He tells the poultry producer that you get a four-pound bird in six to eight weeks. After that, it’s less meat for a dollar’s worth of feed. Ritchie should know: he’s walking agricultural heritage, a member of the family that founded the company in the 1920s, co-manager with his brother Doug, and the company’s all-round expert on growing things, both plant and animal.

Movable feasts
Feed production — and the necessary silos — started on Boteler Street, south of Sussex Drive, in the 1920s. That operation shut down when the National Capital Commission needed the land for what became the Pearson Building, home to the then Department of External Affairs. Ritchie’s moved to Windmill Lane and built new silos in 1963. A couple of years ago, the company moved again and set up a mill in rented silos on Experimental Farm land near Hunt Club and Woodroffe. It used parts from the Windmill Lane site and continued grinding grains and squeezing out feed pellets for livestock in Ottawa and beyond, driven by a need for efficiencies and bigger volume. Inside the old silos, on a tour with Craig Harrison — the company’s fleet supervisor — it looks as if the crew has just left after a day’s work. Spilled grain on the floor, cobwebs in out-of-reach places, light filtering down from windows high above, and the rich smells of last year’s harvest.

Past and future
Aside from community gardens, the Experimental Farm, and small weekend markets across the city, there’s little evidence of Ottawa’s almost 1,000 square kilometres of farmland in the areas where people live and shop. Among the few reminders, the “Vinette silo” on the east side of Centrum Boulevard in Orleans made it onto the city’s heritage register three years ago. But there’s no talk of seeking that official status on Windmill Lane. Harrison, the man who knows the Ritchie silos best, seems a touch wistful when he says they are lying fallow. “But they’re great for signage,” he adds.

MY LOOK: PDA Projects’ Brendan de Montigny

Originally published in the October 2014 print issue of Ottawa Magazine.

Brendan de Montigny is co-founder of PDA Projects, a new gallery on Elgin Street. Photo by Jessica Deeks

Brendan de Montigny is co-founder of PDA Projects, a new gallery on Elgin Street. Photo by Jessica Deeks

Although he is always carefully styled, you could never characterize Brendan de Montigny as superficial. A graduate of the University of Ottawa’s Master of Fine Arts program, de Montigny is co-founder of PDA Projects, a community-centric space for art that opened to no small fanfare on August 16 at 361 Elgin St. Tony Martins talks to de Montigny about life, style, and art.

You seem to have a look that is at stylish and unconventional. Would you agree?
When I was 10 years old I wore a clip tie regularly and I’d read the newspaper in the morning before school. I don’t know if I am unconventional, maybe just always odd. From worst to best, I would read the world news, Canadian news, art news — and I’d save the comic strips for last.

I remember seeing you with a pocket square with tiny skulls. For you, how much about style is in the details?
Style is the details. I used to consider myself a punk — or at least, I was into the music. I now wear the skull pocket square with a suit, a culturally loaded garment, and I like that questioning of binaries found in culture.

What are some of your favourite places to shop locally?
Stroked Ego and Victoire. I also like Tristan because it’s Canadian designed. I actually only shop for clothes a few times a year and then wear them into the ground.

Your haircuts are distinctive and razor sharp — you must work with a seasoned professional, yes?
This is actually embarrassing: I get my hair cut every three weeks! For me, it is a way to relax, have a soda, get a hot shave, a trim, and listen to some good music. I have been going to the House of Barons for the past nine months at 481 Sussex. My barber is Jeff and he has a knack for banter, a good hand with a blade, and is quite existential. The space reminds me of a tree fort for grown ups, they also have Crown shaving products from Toronto — that’s a plus because they’re also Canadian.

Brendan de Montigny is wearing a shirt from Tristan, a black jacket found at Kensington Market in Toronto, black jeans, Nike high-tops, and a Nixon watch. On the wall: artworks by Marc Knowles. Photo by Jessica Deeks

Brendan de Montigny is wearing a shirt from Tristan, a black jacket found at Kensington Market in Toronto, black jeans, Nike high-tops, and a Nixon watch. On the wall: artworks by Marc Knowles. Photo by Jessica Deeks

Do you follow any men’s fashion magazines or go fully rogue?
Rogue, I guess. I am not going to lie. I have tried to read GQ or Esquire and so on and really I don’t identify with this masculine, or gendering, “bro” culture. My late grandfather, who worked an assembly line, who fished who hunted and drove an RV, told me many times: “A person is based on how they act, not how they dress.” I live by that.

Are you inspired by any style icons from the art world? Andy Warhol? Salvador Dali?
Not really. I appreciate that there have been these artists in our history who have pushed their ideas further. However, I have issues when their ideas are diminished by the colour of their hair, the length of their moustache, or the shape of their eyeglasses. Fashion shouldn’t only be determined by what the successful players think, nor should art in Canada be. Art is for everyone. If you love any type of art with confidence you are already succeeding.

MY LOOK: Matt Carson

This article first appeared in the September 2014 issue of Ottawa Magazine. Sign up for a subscription or order back issues here.

By DAYANTI KARUNARATNE

I hear you’re having a lot of success as a model. What would you say is your biggest accomplishment so far?
My most recognized work has been for Le Chateau, RW & Co., and Tristan. But I also did a video for Bon Jovi. It was the weirdest casting call ever: I had to stand in front of a camera with no shirt on, eyes closed, and scream like I was drowning.

Matt is wearing a Z Zegna suit and tie, a Hugo Boss shirt, a vest by Diesel, and Terra Lite work boots. Photo by Andrew Carson

Matt is wearing a Z Zegna suit and tie, a Hugo Boss shirt, a vest by Diesel, and Terra Lite work boots. Photo by Andrew Carson

What did you do before modelling?
Handyman work. I still do it — it’s how I support my interest in modelling. About four years ago, I was looking to get away from being an employee. I was losing interest in working for someone other than myself. Also I wanted to travel more. Things started to get successful last year, and I went to Istanbul, Kilimanjaro, Nashville … there’s no way I could have done those trips while working for someone else.

What would you be doing if you weren’t modelling?
I’d be a musician. I play drums and want to learn guitar. My most recent trip to Nashville really opened my eyes to what I think is my true passion: music.

What do you listen to when in transit? Read any good books lately?
I like classic rock, like Led Zeppelin, The Doobie Brothers, The Eagles, and The Tragically Hip. And I read a lot of biographies of successful people, like Donald Trump, and books like Think and Grow Rich and How to Win Friends and Influence People.

Read the rest of this story »

A DAY IN THE LIFE: Stalking Rhiannon Vogl, Alan Neal + Jill Zmud, and Aaron Cayer

In the print edition, this series gets a snazzy opening page.

In the print edition, this series gets a snazzy opening page.

Call them community builders, locavores, or simply passionate people who fill their days with cool projects. In the September issue of Ottawa Magazine, we tasked photographers Rémi Thériault and Jamie Kronick with keeping up with these fine Ottawans who are helping to revitalize the downtown area. Once the pics were in, OM special projects editor Sarah Brown, OM contributing editor Fateema Sayani, and OM editor Dayanti Karunaratne filled in the captions.

It’s always tough to know what elements of the print edition to share online. We put a lot of effort into making a great layout and — no offence, WordPress — but cutting and pasting for the screen reader just doesn’t do justice to the skills OM art director Jane Corbett and graphic designer Ryan Mesheau bring to a feature. (And that’s not even getting into the whole newsstand sales conundrum.)

So when it comes to posting print edition to web, we play it by ear. For this feature we’re giving online readers a peak — and our willing subjects something to share with friends and family outside of the city.

And if you’re looking for a newsstand or a subscription, just drop a line to feedbackottawa@stjosephmedia.com

 Click on the thumbnails for a glimpse of A Day In The Life of Rhiannon Vogl, Alan Neal + Jill Zmud, and Aaron Cayer. And get the issue for the full story!

MY LOOK: Inspired by Courtney Love

PROFILES: Brooke Henderson — PGA Women’s Champ, Canada