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Artist Story

As a child, I used to watch my mother spend hours sewing dresses while my father painted huge canvases in the living room.  My grandparents on my father’s side share their love of the violin and knitting.  My grandmother on my mothers’ side often painted images of places that she had visited and hung them up in her bedroom. My high school art teachers taught me how to draw, paint, and carve. My creative directors provided me the necessary educational tools to produce film and media products. In a nutshell, my art mentors came from all walks of life and were acknowledged in “A Silent Cheer: Against the Odds”, an inspirational book I wrote based on a true story about overcoming adversity.

I create art because I want to create an environment of empathy. I write in a manner that satisfies my sense of what the world should look like and be like. I am trying to capture in images the things I see and feel, as a way of recording their beauty and power, so that I can share those things with others. I want to communicate my sense of the world – the way of understanding, engaging, experiencing the deaf world - to somebody else.  It is my belief that art is a personal act of courage. It is something that one person does to change another. My source of inspiration comes from a very quiet place in my heart. I know that my best ideas and breakthrough moments burst into flames when I am still and connected with nature.

The story of my artwork follows my journey from being diagnosed with severe to profound hearing loss as a child and facing overwhelming adversities to achieving success as a professional, business owner, and personal confidante.

What is unique about the artwork that I produce is that it shows that I have areas in my life and career that need to be worked on. Each piece of work shares an important message about living well and being inspired to grow. It also has to have magic; if I try too hard, the magic disappears. My legacy as an artist is to add value to leaders who will multiply value to others. I am what will survive me. I am motivated not only make something, but to share it.


Artist Bio: 

Emily Roback was born in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, but has lived in twenty different communities. Her experiences of overcoming a severe to profound hearing loss and leaving familiar things behind inform many of her inspirational stories. Emily is an alumna of Laurentian University's human kinetics program and the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College doctorate program. In addition, she has published an award-winning non-fiction book, a health-western magazine, and aired a sport performance program on television for adults and young people. She lives in Yellowknife, NWT, and has set her sights on documentaries, ice carving and quilting.      

Last Updated: September 6, 2016

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