Richard Shorty was born in 1959 into the Northern Tutchone First Nation. Richard is a self-taught First Nations artist. He originally started painting wildlife at an early age, along with painting his favorite rock star and sports idols in the early 1970’s. He was raised in Whitehorse, Yukon and moved to Vancouver in 1978 where he began his career as a graphic artist.
In 1980, with his artistic abilities maturing, he began working with Woodland Creations. His work with Woodland Creations focused primarily on painting wildlife and scenery. During this time, Richard began to develop his own designs by learning through books such as “Looking at Northwest Coast Art” and others.
In the early 80’s Richard began working on indigenous designs. Many of Richard’s prints are traditional silkscreens rather than digital reproductions. The process involves adding colours one at a time on large printing tables.
Richard’s unique style combines elements of traditional and contemporary design. He is an extremely versatile artist, having worked on drums, paddles, masks, boxes and rattles as well as his paintings. His pieces are collected nationwide.
In the summers Richard can often be found back in the Yukon. Often he becomes our temporary artist in residence at North End Gallery, where patrons are eager to speak to him about his creative process and whatever current work he is painting.
Richard lives his life for his family, his art and his strong spiritual belief.