Educator | Communicator | Photographer

Tag: artists

#Sunnyside365 June 21, 2016


“I moved to Sunnyside in 2008 into a little apartment on 6 st. & 2nd Ave. Before then I used to live up in Hidden Valley and I would put over 1500km a month driving everywhere. Once I moved to Sunnyside, I drove a lot less, I’m lucky if I hit 50km a month now. I’ve moved around the neighbourhood to various apartments and condos, but I can’t leave, this place is home.

I started this 365 photo project as a way to kick my portfolio into gear after my computer crashed. I wanted to keep the inspiration and motivation that I had when I finished university at Royal Roads in April of 2015, and I also felt that it would be critical for me to have some sort of artistic credibility for the courses that I teach at SAIT. But it was the desire to learn more about Sunnyside and Hillhurst that really drove me forward.

Throughout the year however, I’ve come to discover so many other reasons to keep pushing through, even when my brain was screaming at me to give up. The need to persevere has guided me, despite a nearly life-ending depression that I’ve experienced this last year. Even when I personally felt like I couldn’t stand to live another day. In those times, I put my brain on autopilot and let my heart guide me through to next photograph.

There’s so many amazing stories in this community that I’d need to shoot and post 100 photos a day for year. So many incredible stories of perseverance, inspiration, sadness, hope, frustration, support, encouragement. However, the most common word that I heard was “community” and the generosity of the people who reside and visit here.

There’s some amazing history in this neighbourhood, but what I think is the most fascinating thing is the future that lies waiting for this little place. This little village in the centre of the city, this community of friends and families.

I am, in it’s sincerest form, grateful.” Ara Shimoon, Sunnyside365

*For the curious, I shot this photo using a remote trigger for my camera.

#Sunnyside365 June 10, 2016


“My dad’s grandparents came from Italy back in 1906 to Rochester, New York. In 1909, his great-grandmother made the trip from Italy at the age of 75. Can you imagine? Four months at sea at the age of 75. They worked their way across Canada working on the Railway and decided to stay in Calgary.

They opened up a corner store on the corner of 10a street and bought the little brick bungalow next door back in 1916 (but back then it was 11th street-they didn’t have the A streets at the time). Later on it became a shoe store, and Nancy Wilson had a dancing school there too. There was a little garden between the two buildings. Now it’s the starbucks and the Kensington Pub. I remember being in the K-Pub back when it was still a family house. I was three or four years old, but I still remember the basement.

My dad saw the film ‘Singing In The Rain’ when it first opened at the Plaza Theatre and told his parents that he wanted to be a dancer. The arts have always been in my family so they encouraged him on his dream. My dad is Allan Jerry Cozzubbo. He opened the Allan Cozzubbo Academy of Dance and ran it from 1967 to 1997. He helped choreograph the ’88 Winter Olympics opening ceremonies and had people like Sean Cheesman (he judged and worked on So You Think You Can Dance in the USA, Canada, and the UK – he’s from Calgary) come through his school. I work at the Jubilee for the International Association of Theatre and Stage Employees Local 212. I also DJ. It’s like the arts are in my genes.

My connection to this neighborhood goes back five generations. I lived here back in the 90’s, but I can’t afford to live down here any more. Still, I’ve been coming to the Roasterie since the late 80’s and even though I don’t live here anymore, I still work up at the Jubilee and I’m always at the Roasterie. This used to be a real gathering place for all the counter culture in the City. To grow up and learn from all the regulars here in Kensington – it’s really something. I grew up playing in the grass at Riley Park and now my kids are playing there.” –Jason Cozzubbo.

#Sunnyside365 June 6, 2016


“I lived in this house right after I graduated from ACAD. I have no idea who painted the house… it was painted after left. I guess they kicked everyone out because the house was going to get knocked down, but that was years ago. I’m surprised that it’s still here and the art is still up.

I was in and out in less than a year. That was 2008. It feels so long ago, but also just like it was yesterday.

So much to say about the neighbourhood, where do I start….

I’m such an introvert but when I lived in this house I was such an extrovert. We were always in Riley Park, going to bars, seeing friends, getting together. I live in Sunalta now, but I love the art store here, the shops and going for tea.”

Chika Ando,

#Sunnyside365 May 20, 2016


“Yeah, this City has so much going for it. There’s so many musicians, artists, bands, groups, events, clubs, meet ups… If you don’t find something, you’re obviously not looking. It’s so amazing to be grandfathering into this new era that Calgary is coming into. There’s so many exciting things happening in this city.”

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