Category Archives: Arts

Alex Wong: “You’ve got to check your ego at the door”



A Toronto-based freelance writer and bestselling co-author of We The Champs: The Toronto Raptors’ Historic Run to the 2019 NBA Title, Alex Wong is among the most preeminent personalities in the NBA’s digital sphere. A former accountant, his path to journalism was an unconventional one, sparked by an early-career layoff. Now, Wong — whose work … Continue reading Alex Wong: “You’ve got to check your ego at the door”


Kiliii Yüyan (Part 2): “Let reality unfold before you”



In photographer Kiliii Yüyan’s work, he has drawn on both wilderness survival skills and empathy — qualities he deems “critical” for the projects he embarks on in extreme environments and cultures outside his own. “Human cultures are the most complicated things to understand,” he says. “Human culture is so rich. There’s so much to it.” … Continue reading Kiliii Yüyan (Part 2): “Let reality unfold before you”


Kiliii Yüyan (Part 1): “I never stayed put”



Storytelling has always been a part of Kiliii Yüyan’s life. As a young Chinese-American, his earliest stories came from his Nanai grandmother — stories of hunters riding orcas and roaming the seas. Today, a kayak builder, Nia Tero Storytelling Fellow, National Geographic photographer, and sought-after speaker, Yüyan explores the “human relationship to the natural world,” … Continue reading Kiliii Yüyan (Part 1): “I never stayed put”


Marc Hamer: “This is a small life”



Marc Hamer has lived a great many lives — from wandering the English countryside as a homeless teen to teaching creative writing to inmates. But it’s his latest chapter, that of an author and retired mole-catcher, that has sparked interest around the world. Hamer’s debut book, How to Catch a Mole, has been called “effortlessly … Continue reading Marc Hamer: “This is a small life”


Carla Funk: “Small towns do something to the imagination”



Carla Funk grew up in a place of logging trucks and God, pellet guns and parables. Every Sunday, she sat with her mother and brother in the same pew at the Mennonite church while her dad stayed home with his cigarettes and a fridge full of whiskey. Part ode to childhood, part love letter to … Continue reading Carla Funk: “Small towns do something to the imagination”


TOBi: “Everybody’s fighting a hard battle”



TOBi is having his moment. In the last four months alone, the Nigerian-Canadian singer-songwriter has been name-checked by the likes of Snoop Dogg and Jamie Foxx, and invited to Los Angeles to work on music with The Game. (“My fans are now your fans,” the Los Angeles-raised emcee posted on Instagram.) Add to that the … Continue reading TOBi: “Everybody’s fighting a hard battle”


Yasuko Thanh: “It always feels like we’re writing some kind of fiction”



If a writer’s greatest asset is life experience, then Yasuko Thanh has no shortage of material. The winner of 2009’s Journey Prize and 2016’s Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, the Vancouver Island-based Thanh left home at the age of 15 and lived on the streets of Victoria and Vancouver, where her most prized possession was … Continue reading Yasuko Thanh: “It always feels like we’re writing some kind of fiction”


Nathan Smith: “As long as there is racism in Canada, I want this project to keep going”



Nathan Smith is tired of being profiled. A Jamaican-Canadian photographer from Victoria, British Columbia, he figured he’d harness the racism he’s experienced as a person of colour in Canada and put it on full display. So began his latest creative work, Profiling Black Excellence, a photo project exploring the experiences of racial profiling felt by … Continue reading Nathan Smith: “As long as there is racism in Canada, I want this project to keep going”


Erwan Larher: “What can gather us is love”



Few know what it’s like to survive a mass shooting. Erwan Larher knows all too well. On November 13th, 2015, Larher was one of 1,500 concert-goers at the Bataclan theatre in Paris who came to watch the Eagles of Death Metal perform. 90 people were killed when three gunmen opened fire that night, a tragedy … Continue reading Erwan Larher: “What can gather us is love”


Melanie Wood: “People need to be heard when they’re sick”



When Melanie Wood set out to tell the story of the HOpe Centre in North Vancouver, British Columbia, she didn’t know what to expect. A documentary filmmaker based in Vancouver, she had been used to telling stories of people whose voices had often been neglected. Her documentary A Stranger In Our Home told the story … Continue reading Melanie Wood: “People need to be heard when they’re sick”