contributors

CHRISTOPHER SHULGAN WRITER Can we ever really know another human being? The question confronted Christopher Shulgan while he was investigating the murder of a six-yearold New Brunswick girl for his story on convicted killer George Pitt (?Framed?,? page 78). ?The more I learned about Pitt, the more I doubted whether he was guilty,? he says. ?None of the suspects had a clear motive, and that?s what makes this case so fascinating, because ultimately, someone must have killed this little girl.? COLBY KATZ PHOTOGRAPHER ?There was a group of girls lined up to have their picture taken. Instead of telling the girls to ?say cheese,? the coach shouted, ?Say Jesus!? ? That?s one of the more surreal moments Colby Katz witnessed while covering a Christian cheerleading competition for Toro (?Go, Jesus!,? page 94). Katz was named one of thirty photographers to watch in 2005 by PDN magazine. ?I did try out for cheerleading once, when I was twelve. Six girls tried out. Five made it. I didn?t.? DOUGLAS BELL WRITER For Douglas Bell, an acclaimed memoirist (Run Over, Random House) who has also taken a turn as an actor in CBC?s The Newsroom, a new miniseries about the ?72 Summit Series (?Taking a shot at ?72,? page 67) jolted him back to grade eight. Bell recalls the euphoria of the series-winning goal, observed while sitting next to his childhood tormentor: ?After Henderson scored, Tim Durnford hugged and kissed me before dancing around the room. Paul Henderson saved my life.? MICHAEL HARRINGTON PAINTER To accompany Nathan Sellyn?s short story ?Here Be Monsters? (page 40), Michael Harrington depicted a tense scene between a man and the drug dealer who wronged him. ?I like images that rest in the ?in-between? of a narrative, before or after the action.? Harrington has exhibited his work in New York, Los Angeles, and in his native Ottawa, where a series of long, unnerving drives after dark provided inspiration for his painting. ?Late at night, a parked vehicle with a person in it can be suspiciously spooky.? 10 TORO APRIL 2006 NATHAN SELLYN WRITER After completing his thesis in creative writing at Princeton, Nathan Sellyn found ?the stories that people most enjoyed were the ones that were either brutally violent or contained generous scenes of substance abuse.? His story ?Here Be Monsters? (page 40), from his first collection, Indigenous Beasts (Raincoast Books), was inspired by a girl in Victoria, who died from taking ecstasy laced with crystal meth.?It was one of those instances where vigilante justice seemed not unjustified.? ALAN CLARKE PHOTOGRAPHER Given his birth in Ireland to ?a seafaring family? and a career in photography that includes shoots for French Glamour, Dazed & Confused, and Nike, Alan Clarke was the logical choice for a nautical-themed fashion shoot (?Ship to shore,? page 86). Now based in London, Clarke runs a tight, if unconventional, ship. ?On the shoot, I insisted we all dressed up as pirates, but no one found my enthusiasm inspiring enough, and I was the only pirate.? BIRTHE PIRONTEK PHOTOGRAPHER When Birthe Pirontek stepped into the ring with boxer Kevin Reynolds (?Rock bottom,? page 30), he quickly sized her up. ?He immediately noticed I need some muscle to strengthen my skinny body, which became one of my New Year?s resolutions.? Pirontek, a German photographer who moved to Vancouver in 2005, is now working on another project involving the burliest men of all: ?Lumberjacks, in their camps somewhere in the wild Canadian forest. I keep meeting the really tough guys.? JOHN TURNER WRITER For John Turner, covering a Christian cheerleading championship (?Go, Jesus!,? page 94) was strangely bittersweet. ?The Southern charm of everyone I met was endearing.? However, the Toronto-based writer, CBC producer, and blogger (Parkdale Pictures) found meeting the cheerleaders themselves flummoxing. ?They?re these seventeenand eighteen-year-old girls with hormones racing through their bodies. I was just like, ?Oh shit. They better chill before I end up in jail!? ?

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