Guy Rodgers with Patrick Lloyd Brennan, Managing Director of Quebec Drama Federation

Photo by Nasuna Stuart-Ulin

July is a month for the great outdoors, staycations, or whatever form of great escape is most therapeutic for you. It is also a splendid month for day trips and outdoor festivals. Arts Alive! Québec will be at Huntingdon in the Chateauguay valley on Saturday July 8, the Morrin Centre in Quebec City (August 3-4), and Knowlton in the Eastern Townships (August 3-5). These are all beautiful places to visit with wonderful activities and events lined up, so I hope to see you there!

Meanwhile, back in the office we have had some changes in staff. Naima Phillips, who joined ELAN last fall as our Membership Services Coordinator, has had to leave us. During her eight months with us, Naima made a strong contribution toward implementing new services and incorporating membership more deeply into ELAN’s processes, projects, and communications. We wish Naima all the best.

Emily Enhorning, who was working with Naima as membership assistant, has assumed the role of Interim Membership Services Coordinator. Emily will be assisted by Isabelle Shi (Membership Assistant) and Jennifer Broydell (Special Projects Assistant) over the summer months as we complete a major overhaul of ELAN’s on-line membership system. Krista Muir has also joined us for the summer as Arts Alive! Québec Communications Assistant. We are pleased to welcome such a skilled and enthusiastic group to our team.

We are also writing final reports on projects from last winter/spring, and preparing new projects for the fall, as well as ELAN’s 14th Annual General Meeting on August 27. We will have plenty of news next month. For now, let’s make the most of the fleeting pleasures of July.


Guy Rodgers
Executive Director

Save the date!

ELAN’s next AGM will take place on Monday, August 27!

ELAN’s board consists of two members per discipline (music, dance, visual arts, film and video, theatre, writing and publishing) plus two members to represent the regions of Quebec (outside Greater Montreal), an arts presenter, and a corporate representative. Three of these seats are filled by representatives from the Quebec Writers’ Federation, the Quebec Drama Federation, and the Association of English-language Publishers. Board members are elected for two-year terms.

All ELAN members in good standing (those who have paid membership fees) can nominate a fellow artist or cultural worker for ELAN’s board of directors. If you think one of your colleagues would make a good representative of the English-speaking artistic community, contact us for a nomination form at, and submit the signed nomination form by July 16.

Seats up for election at AGM 2018

Dance Representative (1)
Visual Arts Representative (1)
Theatre Representative (1)
Music Representative (1)
Arts Presenter Representative (1)
Corporate Representative (1)

We hope to see you there!

Circus Arts


  • Wapikoni Mobile is hiring a Youth Outreach Worker and Filmmaker Mentors for a four-week contract between MAY – OCTOBER 2019. Click here for details. 
  • Wapikoni Mobile is hiring a Financing & Partnerships Manager. Deadline is JULY 30, 2018. Click here for details.

Multidisciplinary / General

  • Folie / Culture is hiring an Administrative Assistant. Deadline is AUGUST 3, 2018. Click here for details. Please note that this posting is only available in French.
  • Centre Phi is hiring a Digital Content Coordinator. Deadline is JULY 7, 2018. Click here for details. Please note that this posting is only available in French.
  • CJLO 1690AM is hiring a Station Manager. Deadline is JULY 19, 2018. Click here for details.


  • Silk Road Institute is casting for its independent production of The Domestic Crusaders, by Wajahat Ali, directed by Deborah Forde. Auditions will be held JULY 12, 2018 from 1PM – 5PM at the Black Theatre Workshop. Deadline to apply is JULY 9, 2018. Click here for details.
  • Centaur Theare is hiring an Administrative Assistant. Deadline is AUGUST 8, 2018. Click here for details.

Visual Arts

  • FOFA Gallery is hiring a Curatorial Intern. This is a full-time, temporary position. $16.00 / hour. Deadline is JULY 22, 2018. Click here for details.
  • Articule is hiring a Communications and Events Assistant. Deadline is AUGUST 6, 2018. Click here for details.

We thank everyone who came out on June 11, 2018 for the ELAN & FRINGE Schmoozer! We had a great time meeting, speaking and ‘schmoozing’ with all of you!

Here are a few photos from the event:


Elegant Orchids by Sharon Smith.
Painted at her family cottage by Lake Magog.

Infinite curiosity; infinite creativity.

By: Sufia Duez

After two phones calls with Sharon Smith, I asked her if we could meet in-person for an interview. Somehow, our long cellular conversations could not give justice to the stories that Sharon eagerly shared with me.

And so we met, and Sharon was ready. Her artwork and documented memories sprawled across the room. The abundance of vibrant paintings of plants and flowers inspired by her travels could transport you to the most majestic of landscapes: India, Bali, and Japan just to name a few of her journeys. The colours almost emitting an odour of rich plant life.

She picks out one of her paintings: mushrooms grown and prepared by her nephew. She says, “They were so good, I just had to paint them!” And I don’t doubt it. Her brush strokes do more than a photograph, they seize your senses as if, for a moment, you can taste the mushrooms too. Whether a painting of wild mushrooms, a bouquet of flowers, or a landscape, Sharon Smith’s paintings are homages to life. She honours what she loves, and the stories behind her artwork affirms her values of being present.

On the other hand, Sharon Smith never forgets. Her artworks are relics of her life. Born and bred in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Smith has been painting since she was 5-years-old and has continued painting ever since. Her earliest of muses continues to inspire her to this day: the family cottage overlooking Lake Magog. She notes: “The cottage is a sacred place to paint” – a family sanctuary that has endured through generations.

However, after foraging through Smith’s immense collection of paintings, it is clear that her artwork is not limited to scenes from her cottage, her travels, or even her own experiences. Rather, her paintings are inspired by human connection. Sharon draws inspiration from a variety of places including books and photos sent to her by family members and friends from their homes and their travels. “Often I take something I like and make it mine.”

Smith has an undeniable zest for life. I ask her if she ever feels frustration or anger when she works on a project. She tells me that she can’t allow herself to indulge in frustration. Instead, she concentrates on the process: “Try to remain positive to keep going.” Sharon admits that she frequently does not get it right the first time, but she works on it persistently until it feels complete. She imparts a personal wisdom: “Good, better, best. Never let it rest ‘til the good is better and the better is best.”

As art has been a lifelong passion, so has education. Sharon Smith studied Fine Arts at McGill University, Education at Concordia University, and received a Teaching Degree from Berkeley University. Moreover, she studied under renowned artists such as Rita Briansky and Ming Ma. Smith actively seeks new challenges and new forms of art making. Her appetite for learning conjointly cultivates with her passion for sharing and teaching. Smith has been teaching children and adults in Quebec and abroad for many years, and she continues to teach today — often teaching multiple generations of a family. She shows me photos of her students’ artworks, documented over the course of decades, many of which she is still in contact with now.

Sharon Smith’s artwork immortalizes the connections she has made in her lifetime. All of her journeys aligning with her passion for learning, teaching, and creating art. Presently, Sharon Smith is involved with NRTEA (National Roundtable for Teacher Education in the Arts). You can learn more about NRTEA here.

“It’s the message that I’m getting from the universe, stay positive, stay grateful, stay hopeful, and that’s what I do.” – Sharon Smith

Discover more!

Sharon Smith’s Website

Follow us on our new Instagram account to see more of Sharon Smith’s artwork.

A new photo or video will become available everyday from June 15 – 21, 2018.

See Previous Features and Shorts!
Laurence Dea Dionne (Shorts!)
Avy Loftus (Feature)