Illustrator Anja Jane creates unique Pacific West Coast-inspired art pieces—and we’re in love! We chatted with Anja about her decidedly local work, and are giving you a chance to win some of her from-the-heart art! —Vita Daily
Hi Anja! What type of art do you do?
I create beautiful illustrated worlds that are rich in nature. Joyful scenes capturing the magical places I visit near my home on the Pacific North West.
What does the creative process look like for you?
All my inspiration comes from immersing myself in nature. I see something that sparks an idea. The way the bees buzz in an alpine meadow or the bright yellow leaves of larches against a blue sky. The ideas bubble inside of me on a hike or when I’m kayaking and I feel as if I am going to burst until I can translate it onto paper when I get home. Movement helps me keep the energy in my body flowing so I like to dance, hike, work with my body energetically through a kundalini practice. Meditating and being in nature creates space in my mind. This is the space and flow I believe I create from.
As an artist, what inspires you?
I remember creating my first art piece when I arrived in Vancouver. It was “Pink House” and was inspired from walking around my neighbourhood in Kitsilano. I loved how the gardens blended into sidewalks. The abundance and colours of spring were so vibrant compared to back home in London. I was literally falling in love with the city, so giddy! I felt nourished having a greater connection to nature with the breathtaking wilderness that surrounds us here in Vancouver.
What are you working on now?
I am working on an interactive art piece for an organization dedicated to caribou recovery through conservation breeding. The art piece highlights endangered flora and fauna in B.C. I was shocked to learn from the Narwhal that a province that markets itself as Super, Natural, B.C. has more than 2,000 species of animals and plants are at risk of disappearing—and still has no endangered species law. For every 10 prints sold, one will be donating to a school for children to learn and become passionate about saving the amazing plants and wildlife that make B.C. so incredible!
Through the pandemic I have been really missing community groups and the connections these bring. I started a sacred sunrise group here in Vancouver we meet on the beach every week at sunrise and dance. I believe being present to the rhythms of nature makes us awake to its destruction so we can be warriors fighting to protect mother earth. We start the ceremony by creating a sacred medicine wheel altar with the four directions. Acknowledging that we are gathered on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the Coast Salish peoples. We cultivate a deep gratitude to be on this beautiful abundant land. As well as this I created an Indigenous book club. It was here I came across Sacred Earth Solar who empower front line Indigenous communities with renewable energy. Sacred Earth Solar also works with Tiny House Warriors in their fight against Trans Mountain Pipeline man camps. These work camps bring thousands of temporary workers to small communities, increasing violence against women, drug, and alcohol abuse to Indigenous communities. All donations from sacred sunrise go toward this cause.
Win! An Anja Jane Prize Pack!
We have a winner! Congrats Claire B. of Vancouver, who will receive a special Anja Jane prize, including an illustrated card deck showcasing local hikes and popular spots and a print of their choice!