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Vancouver Island artist leads first mural painting in Saanich community art project

Community canvas mural project seeks to create vibrancy, sense of belonging
Artist Claire Crawford has been selected to paint the first of three murals as part of Saanich’s community canvas mural project at the entrance to Cedar Hill Recreation and Arts Centre in Cedar Hill Park. (Courtesy District of Saanich)

Vancouver Island artist and illustrator Claire Crawford is leading the painting of a mural at the entrance to Cedar Hill Recreation and Arts Centre in Saanich.

Last week, the District of Saanich announced Crawford, who designed the mural, as the inaugural artist for its community canvas mural project which kicked off Monday (Aug. 29) at Cedar Hill Park.

“I was thrilled to see that the District of Saanich was running a program like this,” said Crawford in a news release. “To be chosen as one of the three artists was an incredible feeling and I can’t wait to get started.”

The community canvas mural project – which will see three murals painted in Saanich parks throughout the summer and fall – aims to enhance neighbourhoods and public spaces by integrating public art. It’s also aiming to evoke a sense of pride and belonging within the community through publicly accessible and engaging art.

Artist proposals were reviewed through a two-stage process by a selection committee consisting of Saanich staff and community members as well as artists and creative professionals.

“As part of this project, I’m planning to showcase my own unique style that focuses on the confluence of natue and scoial attributes within our culture,” she said.

Her concept was to create a design of many different species of birds flying through the air triumphantly – to serve as a reminder of the region’s welcoming spirit and that the Cedar Hill Park area is a place bringing people from all walks of life together.

A community painting day is planned for Tuesday (Aug. 30) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 3220 Cedar Hill Rd. and is open to all.

Painting of the mural is expected to be completed by Thursday (Sept. 1), with information on the next two mural installations at Beckwith and Layritz parks to be announced in September.

For more information on the 2022 community canvas mural project, visit

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