Meet the 2021/2022 Participants
Alicia Reid is an award winning Jamaican-Canadian photographer and aspiring filmmaker based in Toronto. Her work is inspired by the Caribbean and Toronto culture as she loves sharing moments that highlight People of Colour. She’s been doing photography for 5 years and has captured local events and international artists including Burna Boy, Jorja Smith, Wizkid, and Ari Lennox. Alicia started to pursue the visual arts with the purpose of highlighting Toronto, the people, its culture, and environment. Alicia wants to make sure that there is a positive outlook being shown about the city, especially towards people in marginalized communities.
Ananna Rafa was born in Dhaka, Bangladesh, and is an artist, designer and arts facilitator working in Toronto, Canada. Her work oscillates between places, memories, and identity.
Angel de Leon is a Filipino-born and raised graphic designer and illustrator based in Toronto. She currently works as a production manager and graphic designer for Print 3 and is pursuing a career as a freelance tattoo artist. Throughout her younger years, Angel experimented with various mediums including sculpting, textile and print, and ceramics as a form of self-expression, allowing her to have a broad creative background. With her creative skills, Angle aims to tell the stories and experiences of young immigrants such as herself, and share the process of readapting to a new country, culture, and family. Currently, she is on a path of self-rediscovery and reintegration into her culture. Through her art, Angel is determined to be successful.
Anna Lin is based in Toronto and is a designer with print and digital experience. She has a Bachelor of Design (2019) and is a Provisional RGD. Her goal is to create a positive and inclusive community through design. Currently, Anna works as a digital designer for an award-winning magazine and enjoys exploring different creative mediums through illustration and lettering. In her spare time, you can find her testing out a new recipe or catching Pokémon. Visit her website at linanna.com.
Atalia Charles is a Toronto-based photographer and creative collaborator with a Photography degree from Humber College. From taking portraits of friends, objects, and food, to becoming a professional photographer, her years of experience and passion for art have blossomed into a successful career. Atalia's work can be seen on the websites of major restaurants and food delivery services including Just Eat and Skip The Dishes. Additionally, she has worked with the City of Toronto and the 360 Collective to capture the beauty of Toronto's architecture. As a multi-faceted photographer, Atalia is also experienced in corporate events, family sessions, fashion, weddings, and small business branding. Learn more about Atalia's work by visiting her website and instagram.
Carlos Noblot is a Venezuelan writer, filmmaker and multidisciplinary artist based in Toronto. He has written, directed and produced a diverse range of work that goes from narrative short films to experimental art pieces. He believes in always being intellectually curious,and is currently taking his storytelling skills in new directions with several projects in editing, content creation and marketing, a podcast and an increasing interest in mentoring other creatives. Carlos is also developing his first feature film. As he continues to write scripts, he is working on creating Greenhorse, a production company focused on bold and diverse storytelling.
Constanza Farias is a Latinx visual artist and illustrator based in Toronto, Ontario. Through her creative practice, she explores what it means to experience life on the periphery, activism, and healing at the individual and community levels. She is inspired to create work that allows for the physical expression of complex realities,and the most nuanced human experiences and social issues. She is fueled by creativity in all its forms and communities collaborating together. In her creative direction and illustrations, Constanza incorporates bold surreal concepts, story-telling, and traditional and digital mixed media collage techniques. In the past year, her work has been seen in various exhibits, including Being Scene, Gallery 1265 SELF, and published in Our Crip Notes. Her co-curation of Not (Just) Disabled Bodies: Past(s) and Present(s) drew national attention and sparked a conversation about art and advocacy, disability justice, and intersectionality. Visit their website at revivalstudioart.wixsite.com/constanza.
Danica “Dizzy” Ricamara is a two time award winning director, actress and community strategist. She is a graduate of the MTP POV Program (2018), coming out with her first award winning documentary “Worst Student Ever” which since has been featured in TDSB schools, film festivals as well as public press with CP24 Breakfast Television. Since then, she has rooted her creative work to amplify missing voices, through her own creative agency “Friends from the Endz” which creates opportunities for BIPOC content creators to work together. Through this experience she has shifted her work to facilitating interactive spaces/workshops (through POV, The Community Healing Project, NIA Centre, Reel Film Festival) when she mentored and developed emerging content creators to navigate their lived experiences as a way to inspire their craft.
Denae Ennis is a Toronto-based video content creator with a a BA in Communications, Culture, and Information Technology from University of Toronto. Denae sees video as a medium to effectively promote brands and businesses and has worked for brands including Nike, Google, and Flow 93.5. Denae currently aims to pair her videography and creative direction skills to create content which visually represents and promotes People of Colour.
Eileen Xue (she/her) is a multimedia creator from Toronto who enjoys using emerging technologies to blend the digital with the physical world to create innovative experiences. She has been exploring how technology can be used to generate and create art while adding another dimension to existing art forms. Eileen is an avid lifelong learner who completed her Master of Digital Media degree (2020). As a result of COVID-19, she pivoted her research project to show how restaurants could utilize web-based augmented reality and 3D food to add visual interactions to digital menus. Eileen’s work is inspired by Toronto’s food trends and multiculturalism, where she hopes to create more interactive experiences to engage with local communities and beyond. Check out her website at eileenxue.com and Instagram @TheLearnaholic.
Gloria Elogo AKA Glo Romy is an artist and designer, currently based in Toronto. Curiosity, style, and a handful of nomadic experiences have brought collaborations with Champion, Urban Outfitters, and Tarana Burke, as well as recognition from FADER, Shifter Mag, and CTV amongst others. Accolades also include award-winning work; Applied Arts in 2019 for "SHOEBAE" (Editorial), as well as by Adobe for "Naptural" (UI & UX). Ultimately, Glo’s work is grounded in community, connectivity, and a love for Hip Hop, fashion, and culture.
Harmeet Rehal (they/them) is a disabled and mad Sikh- Punjabi settler, multidisciplinary artist and student based in Tkaronto. Outside of art, Harmeet is also a community arts facilitator and does informal and formal peer support in the city. Throughout all of their roles Harmeet is deeply invested in centring, creating and imagining radical accessibility.
Jasmine Swimmer is a social media and content strategist who has worked with brands including Universal Studios, Shea Moisture, Philips Avent. She has also worked with non-profits including United Nations Youth Delegation and Canadian Roots Exchange. Now a new mom and Entrepreneur, Jasmine dedicates her time to unveiling the hidden world behind going viral, the art of storytelling as it applies to building your brand, getting funding, and pitching yourself. She currently sits on two advisory councils where she contributes to decision-making for large grants for art, music, film and youth-led collective initiatives. Jasmine also runs workshops as a member of Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC) where she educates young women on financial literacy and how to build a business from home.
Jessica Campbell is a self-taught freelance designer who has been a multidisciplinary artist since she was old enough to pick up a Crayola Glitter Crayon. Working in illustration, graphic design and traditional art, expressive color and exploration is always present in her work. The process of learning, creating, and sharing art is her biggest passion. Jessica is currently growing her career as a professional artist and hopes to inspire others to follow their creativity. Check out her Instagram at @campjesss and website campjessdesigns.com.
Juan Sebastian Laverde (He/Him) believes art is a vehicle to change society. He is a Film Producer and arts administrator whose work showcases initiatives done in the cultural sector and the creative industries. JuanSe works in creating digital content for not-for-profit organizations, helping them grow and pursue their goals to give back to their communities. A newcomer to Canada and a proud Latino looking to make a difference, he is focused on storytelling to promote change, whether through his own projects or on commission. JuanSe focuses on highlighting with images, sounds and scripts the efforts done by people to make the world a better place.
Leo Dean (he/him) is a self-taught multidisciplinary artist with a background in painting, digital illustration and community-based public art. Born in Scarborough, Leo is descended from a family of immigrants with roots stemming from Portugal and the West Indies. His artistic journey began at the age of two when Leo was given a crayon by his grandmother and began to draw vague yet purposeful shapes. Since then, he has worked as a youth artist for Mural Routes, VIBE Arts, and most recently as a muralist for The Canadian National Exhibition. His work delves into narratives that bring queerness to the spotlight while questioning societal norms through exploring gender and racialization. As a firm believer in transformative justice, Leo uses art as a form of harm reduction while envisioning a prosperous future for 2SLGBTQIA+ youth.
Paolo Manalo is a multidisciplinary creative who started off as a hip-hop street dancer with an appreciation for Media Arts. A graduate of the 2019 POV Media Training Program cohort, Paolo has won a team commercial challenge for Ozery Bakery which resulted in a Production Asisstant internship at Revolver Films (2020). Paola has learned media foundation basics, and has since worked on several film sets. Working in dance, acting, hosting shows, and content creation, Paolo is constantly honing his craft. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Paolo has been studying graphic design and hopes to learn and apply motion graphic/animation in future works. Inspired by YouTube vlogs, talent/game shows, and comedy/action movies, Paolo aspires to create his own show and production company and strives to learn new things to improve his skills as a creative entrepreneur.
PRAJJ is a Toronto based Director and Writer. His debut short film “Bollysingh” played at several film festivals and was an official selection of TIFF Next Wave (2019). He is the recent winner of Regent Parks Director Spotlight Pitch Competition and is currently working on developing a sketch comedy show for CBC Gem.
Roda Medhat is a Kurdish-Canadian multidisciplinary artist living in Toronto, Canada. Roda is currently working as a freelance photographer and full time content creator within the food industry. Roda has shown his work in galleries across Ontario and twice internationally. He has studied at OCAD U (Toronto) and FAMU (Prague). While Roda’s main practice is in photography and videography, he also has a passion for sculpture and installation.
Follow his Instagram @reallyroda.
Rui X is a versatile multidisciplinary artist who is fascinated with the juxtaposition of unorthodox visual elements. A lifelong creator, she is experienced in a variety of artistic media and works in both traditional and digital forms. Her style is fluid and eternally evolving with each piece. Rui's work focuses on the interactions between human and environment, and attempts to capture her profound love of nature. As a first-generation Chinese immigrant, Rui primarily operates from a bi-cultural viewpoint imbued with both Asian and Western influences, and strives to incorporate her complex identity in all her works.
Sahar Askary Hemmat is a Toronto-based multimedia artist. Born and raised in Iran, she did her bachelor’s in Photography at Tehran University of Art and has recently completed her MFA in Documentary Media at Ryerson University. She has been part of several group exhibitions. Her latest exhibition ‘Gav Khouni’, a multimedia installation looking at the intersection of landscape and identity, was recently held at Prefix Gallery. Her artwork includes a wide range of artistic mediums including photo, video, textile and installation. The subjects of her works are driven by her lived experience and reflect on the ideas of “memory” and “place”.
Serene Chan is a Chinese-Canadian creative and an expert daydreamer who utilizes her passion for storytelling to produce digital and traditional imagery that provokes child-like wonder and captures nostalgia. Her work draws on her interest in mental health, East Asian history and mythology, and all things fantasy. Serene has worked as a freelance traditional painter and digital illustrator supporting other independent musicians, writers, and artists. She strives to create awareness in the beauty of Asian cultures and otherwise marginalized communities. When she isn’t painting, you can find Serene working with her hands: sewing, making resin crafts, and thrift flipping.
Theia Ramsammy AKA CyberLimbix is a multidisciplinary visualizer and story-teller. Their work holds space for narratives of queerness, vulnerability, intimacy, trauma, holistic healing, transformative justice and re-examining popular dogmas. They utilize various illustration, painting, photography, sculpture and animation techniques to create absorbing collections of images for communities or individuals who may find elements of themselves inside the artwork.
Becky Wu is a Chinese-Canadian artist based in Toronto, Ontario. She has lived in both British Columbia and Ontario growing up, moving between different cities. These experiences along with her own cultural background have greatly influenced her personal identity, which she continually tries to express through her work. Becky is passionate about exploring the intersection between art and interactive media, in combination with visual storytelling. She works professionally as an Illustrator and 2D Designer for clients like Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment and the Hand Eye Society. Additionally, she enjoys creating personal artworks and games to share online. Visit her website at beckywu.ca
Follow their Instagram @bekiwoo.
Chantaya Veira is an experienced Social Media Manager who began working as a freelancer in 2020 after earning a certificate in Hootsuite Social Media Management Training. Driven by the desire to support business owners' mission to create a visually appealing and effective online presence, she takes pride in providing the best Social Media Management possible. As a Social Media Manager, her goals include creating a small agency and making a name for her team in the digital marketing world.
Charissa Olano is a multidisciplinary visual artist who creates dreamy and surreal artwork using both traditional and digital mediums. Through her work, her goal is to share a vision, a story, and transform spaces that evoke feelings for the viewer. She is proficient in Adobe Creative Suite and uses it to create digital paintings, illustrations, graphic designs, page layouts, animations, and videos. She has also produced large-scale artworks for hotels in North America, and aims to experience all aspects of the creative process as an artist, director, or curator. When she’s not drawing in her sketchbook, you can find her cruising on her skateboard or relaxing with her pet hedgehog. View more of her work on Instagram @charissa.o or on her website charissaolano.ca.
Ellen Yuna Ahn is a Korean- Canadian Filmmaker based in Toronto and holds a BA in Directing from Drama Centre London/Central Saint Martins (2018). In addition to her BA, Ellen also has a diploma in Performance Art and Design from Central Saint Martins, School of Art and Design. Since then, she has worked both in London, UK and Toronto in production, editing and directing. She is now based in Toronto and works extensively in narrative, corporate and charity filmmaking.
For more information and her showreel, visit ahnyuna.com.
Miranda Kinkead is a self-taught, interdisciplinary artist based in Toronto, Canada. Her practice primarily focuses on painting and mixed media via the methodologies of sense-making and storytelling. She explores themes of portraiture and identity through an observation of the interconnectedness of places, people, and objects. Furthermore, her fascination of psychology, otherworldliness, time, and reality tie into her body of work. Miranda is a graduate of Ryerson University’s innovative Creative Industry program where she specialized in storytelling in media, fashion and minored in business and communications. She has several years of entrepreneurial experience within the creative industries involved with; art production, digital marketing management, graphic design for TSO and OFSAA, event production in association with DesignTO Festival 2020 and arts facilitation for kids at Toronto’s Action Potential Lab. With a diverse creative background, her cross disciplinary approach equips her with a broad focus that supports innovation within communications, media, and arts.
Samay Arcentales Cajas is a Toronto-based Kichwa artist and filmmaker exploring human-land relations, the new media dimensions of Indigenous cosmology, and immersive art as a site of liberation. Her works have been shown at imagineNATIVE, Xpace Cultural Centre, Mayworks Festival of Working People, and Maysumak Quichwa Film Showcase, among others. Samay has also facilitated film programs at SKETCH Working Arts and Charles Street Video, where she currently works as Program Coordinator. She held her first solo show “Will You Listen?: Latinx Voices in Tkaronto”, a projection based media installation at Whippersnapper Gallery. Samay works as video designer, and editor for artists and filmmakers across the country. Visit their website at samaycajas.com and follow their Instagram @samay.c.
Selina McCallum is a hardworking and ambitious social media manager, filmmaker, photographer and videographer who is passionate about digital storytelling. She was born in Toronto and raised by her Tanzanian mother and Jamaican father in the Flemingdon Park community. She graduated from the University of Windsor in Spring 2019 with a double major in Digital Journalism and Communications Media and Film. In 2018, Selina won a national award for her videography work in her short documentary Marley’s Journey, which was also featured in Windsor Shorts 2019 on CBC GEM. Selina now works at Hungry Eyes Media as their Digital Media Coordinator and at Street Voices as their Editor, while she also juggles other creative jobs as they come. In her free time, she loves to watch movies and be with friends and family.
Check our her Instagram accounts @selcallum and @shotbyselina.
Srutika Sabu is an illustrator, storyteller and scholar. As a generation 1.5 Malayali diaspora kid, she was born in India but grew up in North America. Her creative practice is the fruits of an interdisciplinary academic background in medicine and transnational feminism. Srutika is motivated by the profound belief that storytelling can serve as valuable tools of knowledge production: stories can tell us fundamental and empathetic truths about the world. Her creative projects aim to educate, navigate nuances and decolonize how we create, analyze and organize knowledge. Aesthetically, her work draws from her South Indian roots and her love for femme-centric shoujo manga imagery. Conceptually, her work explores epistemological hegemonies, development, casteism, globalization and post-colonialism. Although relatively new to a creative career, especially after studying medicine, Srutika has produced work for organizations like Equality Labs, ASAAP and Desi Rainbow Parents and Allies. Check out their Instagram @chandrakari.
T.J. Banate AKA The Noise Witch is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Tkaronto, Canada. They draw inspiration from Filipino culture, precolonial history, spirituality, sexuality, and their experiences as a racialized gender-fluid and intersex person to create immersive and surreal works of art. Their mediums range from the seen (art direction, collaging, illustration, and videography) to the unseen (music, audio production, coding). "I believe that as an artist, my role is to listen to what the art needs. It's not for me to control or dictate, but for me to hold, nurture, and help bring to life." They have been showcased in the Music Gallery’s “Emergents IV” (2021), a virtual reality exhibit, and is the recipient of the Drag Academy’s 2021 Art Award. You can find their work online and in community as a creator, educator, holistic healer, and performer. Check out their Instagram @thenoisewitch.
Zephyr McKenna is a Two Spirit multidisciplinary artist living in Tkaronto. Through mediums like illustration, animation, and 3D modelling, Zephyr explores themes of cultural revitalization, Indigenous language reclamation, and Two Spirit identity. Zephyr is currently enrolled in the Game Art program at George Brown College, and hopes to use the knowledge gained there to create interactive media that sparks conversation and collaboration between indigiqueers and indiginerds across Turtle Island and beyond.