Ed's Interview with Koi Carp Magazine
The following article was published February 2004 by Koi Carp
Magazine in Britain. Koi Carp Magazine is the largest of its kind
Paintings with 'Peace' in Mind
By Ann Telford
Sharing the Dream
As his painting career progressed, Ed was invited to go to Japan to visit Koi breeders and their families. He took some of his prints with him to share his dream of painting 'The human feeling of love with living art (koi) in the sweet Raphael style in classical form'.
It's not surprising that
Edward's paintings give a feeling that they are painted with
'peace' in mind…
Some koi keepers not only collect koi but they also enjoy collecting
things related to their hobby in one way or another. Ed is, as
yet, an unknown artist in the UK koi scene. So, koi art collectors,
add his work to your shopping list!
It is always good to know something about an artist's background when studying his paintings, as it can help one understand what they are trying to portray. Ed is a real character who has had more than his fair share of difficult things to handle.
Born in Connecticut, and one of six children, Edward was brought
up on the freedom of a farm. Dyslexia made school difficult—his
skill was fencing (with swords!) and he took part in tournaments
at Duke University, John Hopkins and West Point. West Point is
the US form of the UK's Sandhurst.
During a two-year tour in Vietnam, he took part in over 150 combat missions, was shot down three times and at one point was listed as missing in action. During one mission Edward saved 25 soldier's lives, which led to him being awarded a 6th Air Medal with Valour.
The Discovery of Koi
Post-traumatic stress disorder is something that is known and understood today. The effects of the war in Vietnam caught up with Edward and in 1995 things came to a head. The Veteran's Administration stepped in with a helping hand. During his recovery time, a fellow veteran told Ed about his koi pond.
Interested by his friend's tales, Edward got a koi book, and
started on the trail of koi information hunting. His latent,
artist's eye was caught by the colours of the koi and he became
determined to have a pond of his own one day. All readers of
Koi Carp know what it is to catch the koi bug and Ed was thoroughly
trapped. Not one, but three ponds later Ed admitted, "I have
to say they are my therapy, because the memories of Vietnam are
not allowed in this place." Ed shared this while sitting
by the largest of his ponds. It's not surprising then, that Edward's
paintings give a feeling that they are painted with peace in
On recovery, Ed showed the same determination as he'd shown
on the battleground. Against some strong opposition he finally
badgered the Veteran's Administration into sending him back to
school. Edward went to the Springfield Technical Community College,
where he studied art. He spent a total of four years studying
art and taking courses on aquaculture.
Ed was then commissioned to paint a picture of Kimmy—Ed's
Model in his Kimmy-Koi series of paintings. Later he asked her
could paint her again but this time with a fish. She agreed to
this rather strange request, thus his painting "The Kiss" was born.
Many high points of his career obviously mean a great deal to
Ed. Visiting over 20 koi farms in Japan; shaking hands with Mr.
Sakai; touring Sakai Fish Farm's Breeding Facilities; being offered
to be sent a koi for his latest painting The Rest by Mr. Dase
of Koshijii Farm, which duly arrived and is featured in the painting.
Having his original four paintings in the Kimmy-Koi series hung
on his college's library walls; working in his tranquil studio
surrounded by Japanese gardens and ponds swimming with Japanese
Ed's paintings have been displayed in various art exhibitions.
He also sculpts and creates Japanese style wood block prints.
His sculpture “The Vision” was featured in the Monson Arts Council
Art Show—“The Heaven Below, The Heaven Above.”
Reprinted from February 2004 issue of Koi Carp Magazine.
See also: Ed's interview
with Koi USA Magazine