For members of the pot culture, Cherniak is best known as the creator of the renowned Great Books of Hashish trilogy. These beautiful and informative books feature hundreds of amazing photographs from the global ganja scene, revealing the finest marijuana, hash and opium from exotic locales such as Morocco, Lebanon, Afghanistan and Nepal. Filled with anecdotes and information on growing, smuggling and consuming marijuana and hash, plus tales of Cherniak’s high adventures through these exciting lands, these books are true canna-classics.
He is also a relentless self promoter, so much so that he insists his name appear only in capital letters. His website boldly declares that Cherniak is the Neil Armstrong of activism, the Michelangelo of marijuana and the Shakespeare of hash!
Cherniak’s work has been featured in many books, including the Psychedelics Encyclopedia, High Culture, Growing Extraordinary Marijuana and the Drug Identification Bible. His photos have been featured in magazines as diverse as Weed World and Homegrown to Time and Newsweek. High Times has been using Cherniak’s photos for covers and centerfolds since 1978.
Cherniak also has a strong international presence. He has produced two German-language books and seen his work used in a number of German publications. There’s even a Japanese edition of the first Great Book of Hashish, published in 1992.
Cherniak will be visiting a dozen Canadian cities during May and June of this year on his “Defining Freedom” tour. He will be promoting his appearance in Cannabis Culture and the upcoming 7th Annual Ontario Hempfest coming in August, which Cherniak will be co-hosting.
Not everything Cherniak does is tinged with marijuana green. He has created many paintings for mainstream events, including having the honor of seeing his paintings used for things as varied as the launch of the Toronto Arts Week, the showguide for the 1992 MacWorld Expo, and to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Eiffel Tower. He also created the only photographic tribute to the Toronto Blue Jays after their 1992 World Series victory, published in The Bulletin Board.
Over his long career he has been actively involved in the US and Canadian Actor’s Equity Associations, The Toronto Arts Awards Foundation, The Heart and Stroke Foundation, Maui Community
Theatre and many other community and volunteer organizations.
Cherniak has been smoking pot since the late 1950’s, yet despite some close calls he has been lucky or careful enough to avoid ever being convicted for a marijuana offence.
Never one to rest on his laurels, Cherniak has a number of new books and projects coming to fruition this year. Book four of the Great Books of Hashish is coming to bookstores later this year, as are two other new books, The Marijuana Grower’s Field Guide and Laboratory Pocket-Bible, and Marijuana Spiritual and Medicinal. A reprint of Book two of the Great Books of Hashish is also due out soon, as is part one of an autobiographical trilogy titled A.M.
Cherniak has also been busy creating marijuana leaves, with a growing library of over 50,000 unique marijuana leaves which he has emblazoned on products including mugs, cups, candle holders, pizza plates, mouse pads, t-shirts, underwear and of course a line of bongs. Another new project is a non-toxic, organic “plant wash” Cherniak has developed, which eliminates moulds and fungi from live plants.
Rest assured that as long as he can inhale, Laurence Cherniak will continue as a tireless writer, photographer, designer and inventor, chronicling the best buds, hash and pot products the world has to offer.
? Laurence Cherniak: www.cherniak.com