Posts Tagged ‘yyj’

  1. ART ATELIER 546

    April 16, 2015 by Tessa Bousfield



    Art Atelier is taking shape at 546 Yates Street (Two doors up from Ferris’ Oyster Bar), and it’s opening to the public this Saturday, April 18th at 7pm with a free event Victoria residents and visitors will love…

    Victoria: Past, Present and Future will celebrate Victoria as seen through the eyes of over 20 of Victoria’s top Fine Art photographers through over 100 images. This is an extensive photography exhibit that plans on evoking emotional connections, nostalgic memories and shared experiences. The community can get involved by voting for the Viewers’ Choice Award up until the end of the show on May 22nd.


    The owners, artist Guillermo Mier and photographer Laurie June, are thrilled to add Art Atelier 546 to Victoria’s rich art culture. It will include a working studio space (“Atelier” means “workshop” in French), with alternating exhibits in multiple medias featuring Canadian and international Fine Art and photography. The gallery is also equipped with a projector and sound system, allowing them to host art films, presentations and talks that are current and intriguing, adding another vibrant touch to Victoria’s unique downtown.



    Laurie and Guillermo crossed paths in 2013, got married and started collaborating on multiple pop-up art galleries before finally opening something permanent.

    Guillermo Mier’s artistic background consists of working with texture and pigments over wood panels. Each panel goes through several stages of preparation and he uses Canadian Birch mainly, primed with shellac several times. Guillermo picked up a talent for art at an early age in Chile and travelled to Brazil and Spain before heading to Canada 22 years ago. He spent a few years in the Yukon before finding his home on Vancouver Island.

    Laurie studies photography, art history and cello. Travelling the world and raising five children gave her the inspiration she needed to take the leap towards professional photography. She has a background in film and digital photography.

    “Everyone and everything in Victoria inspires us,” commented Laurie. “We love walking around downtown day and night and are constantly observing people, buildings, and the general downtown landscape. The city intrigues, amuses, inspires us.”

    Getting ready for the unveiling at 546 Yates Street.

    Getting ready for the unveiling at 546 Yates Street.



    “The purpose [of the event] is to showcase new and unknown talent. We want people to know to expect interesting and intelligent art in many mediums,” commented Laurie. “Victoria is an evolving city, especially downtown. We need to articulate what is important to us about Victoria. For example, The Johnson Street Bridge project… Images of the blue bridge will be archived at the first show along with street scenes, shipyards, marinas and architecture.”

    Sponsored by Phillips Brewery and GMC Projects Inc, the opening night will have the room bustling full of photographers, artists, art lovers, buyers and the media. It runs from 7pm to 10pm, open to all ages, and light snacks and refreshments provided.

    List of participating Photographers:

    • Lis Bailly
    • Trevor Ball
    • Neil Boyle
    • Quinn Campbell
    • Doug Clement
    • Adam Colborne
    • Dan Eastabrook
    • Lloyd Houghton
    • Benoit Jansen-Reynaud
    • Mark Law
    • Evan Leeson
    • Anne Lei-Yeung So
    • Dom Leong
    • Kevin Lintern
    • Cim Mac Donald
    • Donna Robertson
    • Geoff Robson
    • Eileen Seto
    • Brennan Storr
    • Caprina Valentine
    • Adrian Wheeler
    • Terry Zlot

  2. Accio: Anything you want, with the lift of a thumb

    April 1, 2015 by Tessa Bousfield



    Accio means “to summon” in Latin, but you may have heard the name before in the famous Harry Potter series. It was the “Summoning Charm” that caused an object to fly from a distance into the caster’s arms. This spell is one of the oldest known to the fictional wizarding society, and it’s the idea behind Mike Rowe and Carla Smart’s new, local business, Accio.


    Accio is a way to get anything you want, from anywhere you want, delivered to anyone in Victoria, without leaving your house. It’s as simple as texting “ACCIO” to 250-800-2680 to get started. When you’ve announced the “Summoning Charm” you will receive a link to a signup page. Once the formalities are completed, the user texts Accio their email address and POOF! Everything is synced.

    From here, the user can send a text asking for just about anything, as long as it’s legal. Accio scours the city with lightning-speed, sends a quote (which includes tax, delivery charge and tip for the driver), and then the user confirms the charge on the credit card linked to their account. And like magic, the product arrives on their door step. The user can choose immediate delivery, or to receive it at a later date.

    “There are a lot of reasons why someone would use Accio over walking or driving to the store, explained Rowe. “The most obvious one is just laziness, but it could also be because of mobility issues, can’t leave the kids at home, in the middle of some work, or perhaps they’ve just had a few too many drinks.”

    With the recent success of Magic in the United States, now was the perfect time for the duo to launch Accio (which, unlike Magic, does not outsource). Plus, they’re well ahead of schedule for the very busy holiday shopping season, when many people would rather avoid driving.

    Screen shot 2015-03-30 at 10.40.49 AM


    Accio uses a secure service called Stripe to store the credit card information and print receipts so nothing is ever going through Accio’s server; an added piece of mind for Accio’s customers. This also adds to the VERY low business cost of Accio… a meer $250 total to get this all started!

    In addition to Stripe, Mike and Carla had to make use of a few other existing services that are readily available to everyone in order to keep costs down. For the text messaging service they use Twilio, which provides phone numbers for developers. To share the Twilio number as a team (with unlimited operators), they implemented Front to send and receive messages from customers. Rowe and Smart also purchased the theme for their website through ThemeForest for just $20, an SSL certificate for $10, and an IP address to host the SSL certificate for $24. They use Quickbooks for bookkeeping and accounting purposes and Zapier to integrate all of these services with each other.

    For example, when a customer signs up through Stripe, Accio gets a message in Slack about it. When Accio charges a customer in Stripe, Zapier will automatically send this information to Quickbooks so they don’t have to.


    After graduating from Camosun with a Diploma in Business Marketing and then trying his hand at a career in professional poker for five years, Rowe switched paths to the startup world, which can also be a gamble at times.

    Rowe and Smart, have spent the past five years creating various tech-based businesses. The most recent was ForkJoy, a web and mobile app for rating and reviewing dishes from restaurants in Victoria, Vancouver, and San Francisco. There was potential to grow it further, but they ran out of money.

    “I’ve spent thousands of dollars trying to build businesses that have ultimately failed,” explained Rowe. “With Accio, I have only spent a few hundred dollars and about 50 hours of my time between inception and launch. If I can start gaining traction with this idea I will be able to build software around it to help scale. Not just in Victoria, but across Canada and maybe even further. If it doesn’t work out it’s not a big deal to shut it down. The worst case scenario is that I end up learning a lot about an industry I didn’t know before.”


    Rowe and Smart will be hiring their CTO in the coming months and more delivery drivers as business picks up. With Smart receiving her Bachelor of Commerce in Entrepreneurial Management from Royal Roads University this year, there are bound to be new ideas and strategies implemented as well. The biggest goal for the future of Accio, however, is providing more services.

    “We want to be the place where everyone goes to not only get something, but also get something done,” commented Rowe, “For example, lets say your house is a mess. You can text us and we’ll send a cleaner to you. Car break down? We will send a mechanic. Dirty laundry? We will pick up your clothes, get them cleaned and folded, then drop them off to you. Every service provider we use will be hand picked by us to ensure that our customers are getting the best service possible.”

    If everything goes as planned, Accio might just turn into your very own personal assistant!


  3. The rebirth of Victoria’s analogue

    March 19, 2015 by Nevin Thompson

    analogue magazine

    If you haven’t heard of analogue magazine, get ready for the handcrafted Victoria culture magazine’s relaunch on April 1st, 2015.

    analogue represents, documents and promotes the vibrant, energetic music, literature, and arts scene that makes Victoria such an interesting place to live.

    analogue has featured many local artists so far in its short life. Highlights include exclusive publication of local Governer General Award nominated poet Garth Martens, the road diaries of Queen of Vancouver Island Carolyn Mark, and William Farrant’s humorous accounts of his trips to Fort McMurray.

    Launched just over a year ago in December 2013, in just six months analogue would quickly become a much beloved arts and culture sensation.

    The magazine developed a cult following by keeping an on eye up-and-coming local writers, performers and others pouring their heart and soul into Victoria’s vibrant cultural scene.

    While analogue now has a strong online presence, the magazine was launched, as its name suggests, to be something tangible.

    analogue venerates the tangible and is hyper-local in its focus.”

    According to Nick Lyons’ vision, analogue is a print magazine that combines stylish and interesting design with high-quality paper that feels good on your fingertips.

    Besides a quiz section by Benji Duke, analogue‘s first issue featured writing by local authors Isobel Maher and Scott Lansdowne, and local historian John Adams, best known for documenting Victoria’s haunted walks.

    “Poetry stands in the place of advertising,” says Nick Lyons in analogue‘s manifesto, while boasting “analogue contains the most extensive events listing of any Victorian publication.”

    The images provided by analogue photo editor Ilijc Albanese.

    Ilijc’s photographs, says Nick, provide a cornerstones for the magazine.

    Graphic designer Janice Hidlybrant took analogue‘s aesthetic to another level. Website designer Kristen Bingham brought Nick’s vision to life online.

    After going on hiatus for a few months in 2014, analogue will relaunch on April 1st, 2015 with a beefed-up roster including more editors and a new, high-powered publisher, Mary Ellen Green.


    “Until now analogue has focused on print,” says Mary Ellen Green. “However, we launched a website last year along with an extensive social media campaign. The irony of having a website called analogue, of course, is not lost on us. But an online presence is a necessary part of media now.”

    Capturing the very essence of Victoria

    The passion of local writer Nick Lyons, analogue captured the very essence of Victoria from the day it launched in 2013.

    The magazine was launched at the Copper Owl, the cool vintage venue and gathering place located above the historic Paul’s Motor Inn, itself a Victoria landmark.

    Nick is a frequent presence at the Copper Owl, where he spins records (and cassettes!) posing as his alter ego DJ Bimbo.

    Cassette tapes are one of Lyons’ calling cards.

    For the first launch party in December, 2013, Nick handed out 50 mix tapes that were devoted to showcasing local bands – if you can get your hands on one of these limited-edition tapes, count yourself lucky.

    Why the focus on cassette tapes? Nick says he thrives on nostalgia, and loves the mid-spectrum sounds provided by magnetic tape.

    Performing as DJ Bimbo at the Copper Owl, Cenote and other venues, Nick Lyons makes mix tapes for every one of his shows. By the way: if you have a CD player or cassette tape player (or both) he can use, let Nick Lyons know. He may reward you with a beer.


    The Righteous Rainbows of Togetherness will be profiled in the April 2015 issue of analogue. Photo credit: Ilijc Albanese.

    analogue‘s 2015 relaunch

    After spending a one-year hiatus preparing to take analogue magazine from a project to a business, Nick Lyons and his team are ready to relaunch in a big way.

    A key to the relaunch is publisher Mary Ellen Green.

    “Getting Mary Ellen on board is is a major step toward the success of the business,” says Nick Lyon who now works as editor-in-chief.

    Nick and publisher Mary Ellen are themselves part of Victoria’s cultural DNA. Both are alumni of Victoria institution Monday Magazine, where Mary was arts editor, and Nick her most reliable freelancer. Nick and Mary Ellen became fast friends and found they worked well together.

    Another important addition to the analogue team is associate editor Scott Lansdowne.

    “Scott has been a regular contributor to the magazine since its inception,” says Nick. “With his thorough, deliberate eye Scott polishes every piece to a fine lustre.”

    With Mary Ellen taking on much of the business end of the publication, Nick says he’ll able to concentrate more on the creativity that gives analogue its soul.

    Besides the usual focus on poetry and literature, the April issue of analogue will feature a ton of stories exploring Victoria’s blazing hot indie music scene, plus an insider’s look at Victoria’s improv theatre culture.

    As well, this being Victoria, wine, beer and gin reviews will take a centre stage in analogue.

    “It’s a complete mixed bag,” says Nick Lyons. “The strength of analogue lies in its diversity.”

    Analogy: tangible interaction, locally-sourced content

    “In April we will be launching another publication called ‘analogy’,” says publisher Mary Ellen. “This single-page, double-sided free monthly will have a wider distribution than analogue, and will feature crossword puzzles, trivia, comics and other highly engaging content.”

    The purpose of analogy, says Mary Ellen, is to offer a tangible form of interaction with locally sourced content.

    How to find analogue after April 1st

    Look for the analogy one-sheet and analogue magazine around downtown Victoria beginning April 1st. In the meantime, check out

     B-Side extra: Nick Lyons’ local cassette tape mix

    Can’t get your hands on one of Nick’s hard-to-find cassette tape mixes? Track down these local bands at your friendly neighbourhood record store:

    • Hank Pine
    • Lily Fawn
    • David P. Smith
    • Chet
    • Frog Eyes
    • Bucan Bucan
    • Black Valley Gospel
    • Bankrobber
    • Hearse
    • Dylan Stone