Jeanne Alley of Coal Harbour begins work on a 100 square-foot seascape mural that will be placed above the entrance the the Port Hardy Chamber of Commerce.

Artist draws inspiration from marine life

A Coal Harbour artist has begun a huge mural for Port Hardy

Annemarie Koch

Special to The Gazette

PORT HARDY – Imagine a movie where salmon are the main characters and killer whales play a supporting role. Or a daytime drama, where harbour seals lurk in the shadows and bull kelp sways to the rhythm of an everchanging tide.

That’s the scene that artist Jeanne Alley is skilfully inventing in a 100 square-foot mural that will be placed above the entrance to the Chamber office here later this summer.

The mural, which was the brainchild of Yana Hrdy at the Port Hardy Chamber, and  commissioned by the Northern Vancouver Island Salmonid Enhancement Association to promote the Quatse Salmon Stewardship Centre, features this young artist’s talent for capturing the many creatures and forms of light that move and shift through Hardy Bay.

“It’s a whole new world for me,” says Alley, adding that she is fascinated by the variety of colours and life forms that inhabit the ocean around northern Vancouver Island.

Staff at the salmon centre and the Port Hardy Chamber are thrilled to have Alley’s hand on the mural project and look forward to unveiling the artwork later this summer.

For Alley, an illustrator, graphic artist and native of Seattle, the work represents a completely new area of design and content.

“Much of my work has been with smaller surfaces, images such as logos and layouts like brochures,” notes Alley,  “and I’ve only recently begun to work with marine organisms like these.”

The wooden ‘Port Hardy Seine Floats’ sign by the cannery and a ‘happy landscape’ over ten windows at North Island Mall are among her artistic ‘signatures’ to date here in Port Hardy.

Visitors to the salmon centre will have already seen some of Alley’s illustration talents in the ‘critterbook’ that identifies the plants and animals inhabiting the ‘Corey’s Wall’ exhibit.

What visitors who view her work here on the North Island might not know is that Alley was immediately offered a job with Microsoft after graduating from Seattle Central school of design and chose instead to follow her heart and move to Coal Harbour to be with her husband Andrew Hory.

The two met at an Aikido dojo in Seattle over six years ago and, quite literally, ‘fell’ for one another during one of these martial arts sessions.

It’s a long way from Seattle to the shores of Holberg Inlet, but Alley is happy to be here and laughs that her journey north was far less perilous than that of the salmon from the wide ocean to the shores of the Quatse River.

Support for the mural project has been provided by the Port Hardy Lions Club, Rotary Club of Port Hardy, Port Hardy Kinsmen Club, Dona Koch, Hardy Builders’ Supply, Andrew Hory and, of course, Jeanne Alley.

 

Just Posted

Love North Island Society’s dance raises $1,162 for Port Hardy food bank

“It wasn’t just a dance, but a dance party.”

North Island to get new highway maintenance contractor

Ministry provides update on North Island projects and services

115 new wildfires burning across B.C. due to 19,000 lightning strikes

More fires expected to start today, says BC Wildfire Service officials

‘Daddy bonus’ common in B.C. workplaces, study finds

UBC researchers say dads don’t have to be number one in the office to get a raise

Marijuana to be legal in Canada Oct. 17: Trudeau

Prime Minister made the announcement during question period in the House of Commons

VIDEO: B.C.’s ‘unicycle cowboy’ aspires to be rancher one day

Burklan Johnson has only ridden a horse once, but this unicyclist has big plans to become a cowboy.

Rescued Oregon family simply unprepared for adventure, RCMP say

Agencies now helping the group of four get to their destination in Alaska

Large B.C. tree dies after possible poisoning

Police and District investigate after large chestnut tree’s rapid decline

Canucks release 2018-19 season schedule

Vancouver to face Calgary Flames on Wednesday, Oct. 3, for home opener

VIDEO: Luxury Home and Design Show opens with Italian flare

Event set to run Friday to Sunday at BC Place in Vancouver

Small new charge on BC Hydro bills goes toward new crisis fund

The new fund aims to help customers who find themselves in financial emergencies

UPDATED: Crown appeals B.C. polygamous leader’s acquittal in child bride case

James Oler had been charged with taking his underage daughter to the U.S. to marry her off

Fake cops ‘arrest’ woman, steal $6,000 in latest CRA scam

Vancouver police urge people not take calls from anyone saying they’re from the Canada Revenue Agency

Study shows increase in mountain bike tourism in B.C.

Numbers are up, way up, for bike-related visits to the province

Most Read