A portrait is a literal or symbolic representation of a person’s humanity, a glimpse into their very being. This album is a feast of such glimpses. All the musicians have made their own original songs and have been paired with upper-level art students. As a result, each song is a beautiful composite of lyrical, musical, and visual artistry (abstract or otherwise). Every aspect of the project, be it a song or a painting, is a portrait; a portrait of a relationship, experience, or element of the artists’ life, and at the basic level: a portrait of its creator.
We first began this project with the intention of creating high-quality collection of art that is an authentic expression of the community and the individual artists at TWU. In doing so, our goals were to increase general awareness of the talent at TWU and to garner fundraising for the senior gift, a parting donation to the university from the graduating class.
We hope that you appreciate this album and we hope that it will inspire, challenge, unite, and empower TWU students for years to come.
– Walter Brynjolfson, Project Director and TWUSA VP of Finance 2014
PORTRAITS 2016 – Volume 3
“We believe in creating high-quality art that is an authentic expression of the community at TWU, and the individual artists involved. We want this album to be perceived as approachable, insightful, intriguing, and creative to students. In doing so, we hope that this will inspire, challenge, unite, and empower TWU students.”
Going off of Walter Brynjolfson’s words that inspired the original project, a portrait, whether literal or symbolic, is a representation of a person’s humanity, a glimpse into their very being. This album is a feast of the original songs that represent these glimpses. While each song represents the humility of the student who wrote it, they all represent the experiences, relationships, and elements of lives we can all relate to. Each recording artist was in charge of choosing their own album art in order to best represent them, as we are simply students portraying ourselves in the utmost original way. No song, no artist, and no student is the same; but that cannot stop us from coming together to produce something beautiful.
released April 1, 2016
Chief Director & Director of Music: Cheyanne Makelki
Producer: Vincent Clements
Director of Visual Arts: Adriel Carey
Alice Best, Adriel Carey, Alec Gloanec, Darby Arens
Katie Fuentes – The End of the Game
Nathan Hayashi – Numbers
Evan Snee – Everyday Life
Cam Thiessen – When We Talk
Nathan Stein – Saying Goodbye
Cassie Thorpe – Someday
Josiah Corbett – Sandcastles
Kristian Lay – Lauren’s Song
Sidsel Richmond for the lovely Portraits logo
Tori Nikkel for initial group shots
The TWU Music Department for letting us use their space
Darby Arens for all her love, support, and guidance
Download the free album here.
Portraits: Volume 1
Cam Thiessen, a second year biblical studies major and music minor from Calgary, AB, grew up learning to appreciate music from a young age. By age 12, his guitar had become his best friend. He began writing music at the age of 14, and hasn’t stopped writing since. Cam’s musical inspirations include artists such as Pink Floyd, Rush, U2, Radiohead, BIlly Joel, and The Police. His hope is that the honesty of his lyrics portrays a life that is broken and in need of a Savior who has redeemed and repaired it.
Jaron Neufeld is a student who came to TWU seeking an education in philosophy. He says he’s grateful to be on the album. Similar to philosophy, music is a way of life that inspires him towards beauty. Anyone who has experienced beauty says “Yes, this is enough. Essentially, he’s trying to affirm the world as he sees it, and in doing so, desires to increase the joys and console the sorrows of life for himself and others. He considers himself an artist the same way a waiter considers himself a waiter.
Jenna Spowart is a 2nd year Biblical Studies Major at Trinity Western University from Courtenay, BC. She is passionate and dedicated, especially when it comes to her music. She has been singing, playing guitar and writing music since a very young age and in that has discovered immense freedom. Through the years she has managed to create her own style of Christian-folk music. She has a heart for Jesus, leadership and sharing her music. It is her hope to combine these things and make an impact in the lives of many.
Lexie Tjernagel is a second year linguistics major at Trinity Western University working towards becoming a Speech Language Pathologist. Music has always been a hobby that was never taken too seriously in her life but was used more as an outlet; only recently did Lexie start writing her own songs. Lexie’s dream is for her music to change people’s lives and for it to continue to be filled with purpose, never losing the authentic essence of honesty. Her hope is to, starting with the release of this song, “Letting Go”, focus more on her music, sharing her songs through opportunities she is given.
Girl, 21, fourth year Art and English student. Charmingly awkward but (slightly) insane. Hails from the lovely, strange city of Aurora, Colorado. Likes to read fiction, climb like a ninja, and attempt to speak Welsh. Dreams of being a super epic rock goddess in her head, but in the meantime writes and plays melancholic acoustic rhythms about feelings and stuff. Is terribly thankful to be part of this project and given the opportunity to record alongside such talented people. After grad, plans to work as an illustrator and comics writer (and food truck genius) singing quirky songs along the West Coast.
Nate Kara is first year student at Trinity Western, born and raised in a small town in Ontario. Nate came to Trinity by the influence of his close family friends from Ontario. He was always drawn to art at a young age, especially the art revealed in rap. Nate’s music is his way of glorifying the gift’s God gave him and sees rap as a way to show people Jesus is a different way. He hopes to release his own album one day and tour through North America.
Olivia Stephen is a 4th year university student at Trinity Western studying General Studies with minors in Music and Special Ed. She was born and raised on a farm in Saskatchewan Canada where her parents still live. Music for Olivia is a creative outlet. It helps pinpoint and narrow in situations she is experiencing in a meaningful way. In essence, music captures that which cannot simply be spoken. Music goes deeper into expressing, and relatively defining, the unspoken and indefinable states that a human can experience. Olivia realizes that music is a gift and that it should not be taken for granted. This album is a beautiful way for Olivia to share her music in hopes that her song resonates with someone in a relatable way.
Sarah Rae is a singer/songwriter from Victoria, BC. She grew up singing in church with her dad and eventually moved on to writing and performing in high school. Sarah decided 48 hours before O day in first year that TWU was where she was meant to be and has never looked back. Music was a large part of her decision to come to TWU and since her arrival has recorded her first EP and written many new songs. She is really excited to be involved with this project alongside so many talented musicians.
Sheldon was born in Surrey BC, but Oregon is were he has spent most of his days. Ever since he was a little kid he loved to sing and wanted to be a famous singer. Around the age of 12 his Uncle Willie gave himself and his brother their first electric guitar. As Sheldon got older he began playing gigs and on worship teams. Eventually he started writing his own music and played his first show at a coffee shop in a little town called Newberg. Two years later he is still writing and in love with music. To him, there is nothing like it.
Born in the Philippines and lived in Papua New Guinea, Singapore and now residing in Canada, Abby will be graduating with a bachelors degree in the Art and Design stream in Trinity Western University. Abby is quite passionate about art, comics, animation, and video games. Her work is mainly illustrative and story based.
Brooke Higginbotham is a 4th year student at Trinity Western University. She has always loved the creative process and following graduation will continue creating work for exhibition. She hopes to pursue freelance illustration and eventually publish her work.
Diana Hiebert is a 4th year Art + Design Honours BA and English minor. She lives in Abbotsford and commutes to Langley to attend TWU. Diana has always loved to express herself creatively. She is compelled to explore themes such as compassion, joy, and healing, as well as integrate a sense of imagination into her work. Diana is working towards a career that utilizes her creativity and passion for design.
Garrison is in her 4th year of her bachelors degree in Art + Design at Trinity Western. Garrison works in all mediums, but primarily paint and print. Garrison’s current practice stems from her relationship and interactions with and in the natural environment. Garrison’s environmental art has been involved in a number of shows and sold both locally and internationally. Recently Garrison’s work has been shown at the Jansen Art Center in Lyndon Washington, and the Reach Gallery.
Jessica Hurd is a 4th year student currently studying for a Bachelor of Arts and a Film Studies Concentration at TWU. She works predominately in the mediums of painting, drawing, photography and video in her installations. She desires for her work to retain an honest, grounded presence without forgetting the individual nature of human character. She currently lives and works out of Port Coquitlam.
Marianne Soehardi is an Indonesian 4th year student studying for a Bachelor of Arts and Design with a Psychology concentration. Soehardi’s body of work primarily consists of photography, painting, drawing and sculpture. Her art is emotionally driven as it focuses on the cerebral and the visceral settling into the melancholy.
Nancy Timmermans is a Dutch-Canadian artist from the Sumas Prairie of Abbotsford. She is in her final year of her undergrad at Trinity Western University where she majored in Art + Design. She works mainly within the scope of Drawing, Painting, Photography and Graphic Design. A lot of her work consists of portraiture where she explores the ideas of identity, the self, the re-framing and clouding of memory, and the relationship of photography and art.
Olivia Grace de Fleuriot
Olivia is an emerging artist currently in her fourth year of Art + Design in the School of the Arts Media and Culture at TWU. Her research question is how can the human psyche be captured by various mediums such as graphite, oil paint, photography, installations, etc. This question fuels her artistic inquiry and practice. TWU provides an environment for multiple perspectives from other disciplines that strongly support Olivia’s artistic development and inspiration. She benefits from the professors of the art department, who frequently show contemporary art from all over the world, enhancing the students’ knowledge and practice.
Tara Spencer was born in Winnipeg, Canada in 1992. She has studied at Concordia University in Montreal, the Academy of Realist Art in Toronto, and she is currently completing her BA in Art & Design at Trinity Western University with a minor in Philosophy. Tara has been involved in exhibitions in Canada and in the United States, both as an artist and in curatorial roles. She works primarily in oil paint, using non-traditional methods of paint application, and plans to pursue an MFA in Fine Arts after graduation.
Project Director – Walter Brynjolfson
Assistant Director – Cody Friesen
Producer – Ken “Kraylie” DiTomaso
Layout/Graphic Designer – Sidsel Richmond