John Gould was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1929. His mother was a poet and father active in theatrics so he was exposed to the arts all his life. he entered the Ontario College of Art in 1948 where he studied drawing and painting and graduated in 1952. He the studied at the Académie Julian in France and then travelled Europe.
Upon his return home from Europe, he hitchhiked to Mexico, Vancouver and back to Toronto completing odd jobs along his way. He also worked for the paint shops of the CBC's Television studios for some time.
By 1960 he had established himself as a promising artist and won the Elizabeth T. Greenshield Foundation Award which resulted in a trip to Spain.
Gould won the Hadassah First Prize Award in 1961 and in the same year he held his first solo exhibit at the Here and Now Art Gallery in Toronto. Gould then exhibited at the Dorothy Cameron Gallery in the winter of 1963.
Along with painting he appeared in a few theatrical productions.
He has taught drawing at the Royal Canadian Academy, the Ontario Society of Artists and the Canadian Society of Graphic Art. He is an academician of The Royal Canadian Academy.
He is represented in the collections of Dr. G.A.Pengelley, Mr. & Mrs. Percy Waxer, Mrs. T.P. Lownsbrough and many others.
He died in 2010.