My father was born and raised on the island. Dominica to be exact. When he was very young, around 21, he migrated to America and has been living here ever since. I am still looking forward to traveling to his home town.While he lived in Dominica, he used to hand paint. When he moved to the city, it wasn’t long before he started attending Albert Pells Art and Design school. He went there three years before Mr. Pells himself asked him to teach at the school his fourth year. After a year of teaching he started working at General Electric. When he stared working at General Electric, is when the sign scene really started becoming computerized. Most of the art that was previous done was mainly done by hand. Painted. When he got there, General Electric was more or likely in the sign business lead. They were very popular for their picture sides. My dad worked with General Electric long enough to soon branch out on his own.
When he started his business, CSJC Graphics, he did not have the funds to buy machinery like most of the well established sign companies; however, he made do with what he had. Whenever he did any kind of job he did it all from his heart and put his best effort forward. He hand painted most of his work but did not settle there. He worked forward and stayed in contact with the fast pace ‘sign world’ (for lack of a better term). I still remember him painting in his shop when I would come home from school as a little girl. I loved that smell. My siblings and I were never allowed to go near his paints. (One time my little brother called himself helping my dad out and added a line onto a sign while he was asleep. You can guess how that story ended.) When ever a sign was done, it wasn’t uncommon for the whole family to ohh and ahh over the sign, take pictures and sometimes even go to watch him put it up.
One day my father picked up the paint can and read the small print. The warning. WARNING! THIS PRODUCT CONTAINS A CHEMICAL KNOWN TO THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA TO CAUSE CANCER AND BIRTH DEFECTS, OR OTHER REPRODUCTIVE HARM.
From then on, he talked about buying a machine. He got a machine. And now he doesn’t paint anymore.