Jonathan Bouchard, better known as Jobi, has been sculpting for as long as he can remember.
He started sculpting snow at a young age, but after meeting a few sand sculptors, he found his true passion.
“It’s been maybe 15 years now that I do sand sculpting and right at the beginning I had success competing and trying to make my way on the podium,” Jobi said.
His sand sculpting talents have brought him across the world and have given him the opportunity to compete for prize money and showcase his work at multiple events.
Although sand carving is time-consuming and requires a lot of patience, he finds it relaxing.
“There’s a lot of shovelling involved but the sculpting part is really nice. It’s really delicate. We only use forks and spoons and little spatulas but it’s meditation for me,” he added.
Recently, Jobi faced a new challenge. He was selected to compete in a unique television series called Race Against the Tide, a show featuring 10 pairs of sand carvers working against the world’s highest tide at New Brunswick’s Bay of Fundy.
“The timing was really short. Normally we have something like 24 to 30 hours to do a sculpture and over there it was about six hours.”
The show is set to premier on Sept. 9 on CBC. Jobi couldn’t disclose whether he won or not but says it was a lot of fun.
In the meantime, he’s continuing to practice and explore his talents with other materials at his home in Saint-Calixte in the Lanaudière region.
“I want to get more and more involved in metal sculpting or concrete or any permanent material,” he said.
He’s not ready to give up sand sculpting for good, but says he’s hoping to work with different venues and cities to build more monuments.
Four years ago, Jobi worked with the town of Saint-Calixte to create his first monument: a concrete sign in front of Parc Central. It is something he says he is proud of and hopes to build on.