Gerrit Verstraete

Gerrit Verstraete, AOCA, BFA, is an artist in his Masterpeace Fine Art Studio and founder of the Drawing Society of Canada. He lives on Gabriola Island, BC, where he co-pastors with his wife in the Church On The Rock, a fellowship they began in 1993. Visit and

I have been passionate about fine art for over 45 years, including both classical and contemporary traditions, ever since first enrolling as a young student at art college. Little did I know I’d have to account for that journey in light of the Kingdom of God, when I was called into fulltime ministry. Hasn’t been easy, especially since my ‘major’ form has been figurative realism, despite abstract variations. But then, locally, among the children at the Hope Centre here on Gabriola Island, I am known as ‘the pancake man,’ because I make awesome pancakes. Now that’s a reputation worth remembering.

Making the most of going back to college

When you are sixty-five years old, going back to school is both formidable and frightening. Here's my advice for those who, like me, are returning to school later in life.


More From This Contributor

real people in real time

"Real people in real time" by Gerrit Verstraete AOCA, BFAIt's early Monday morning and very dark on British Columbia's Pacific west coast. I'm in the lineup for the 5:45 am ferry from Gabriola Island to Nanaimo. About half an hour later I am nursing a steaming hot...