First Year Student Ryann Carney's Design Selected for the 2016 Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival

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By Roxanne Toronto

Posted on November 09, 2015 | Updated April 27, 2021, 11:49am

View all of the entries through November 13.

First year student Ryann Carney is the winner of the competition to design the iconic street banners that will line the Burrard Street Bridge during the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival next spring.

The competition is part of a partnership between the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival (VCBF) and the University to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Festival. 80 students took part from Emily Carr's first year Core Design Studio, where students explore creative ways to solve problems and engage with the world.

Creative thinking + critical making drive meaningful engagement.

This project was an opportunity to build on the development of context awareness in design, implicating issues of audience, place and shared cultural understandings. The assignment was divvied into three distinct parts: Phase 1: Research, including a site survey and precedent study on existing graphic solutions for banners; Phase 2: Conceptualization, including brainstorming, sketching, and definition of communication goals; and Phase 3: Development, including a process book.

“This wonderful project provides essential learning opportunities and professional experience for our students. Working with community partners in collaboration is a core value of the Faculty of Culture + Community at Emily Carr, and we are thrilled that the Cherry Blossom Festival has engaged our talented foundation students and exceptional faculty with this real world project," says Susan Stewart, Dean, Faculty of Culture + Community.

For Ryann, cherry blossoms have always been a sign of spring; the intent of her design was to represent the Festival in a way that showcased both the beauty and significance of the blossom.

"The Cherry Blossom Festival is such a vibrant part of Vancouver, I wanted the banner to reflect that," said Carney. "I was inspired by how much cultural power and significance the Festival has, yet it still manages to be whimsical and fun. The large flowers try to reflect how important the cherry blossom is, while the pattern in the background emulates people gathering beneath the trees and the abundance of the blossoms in the city. I hope my banner speaks to anyone that sees it, and that the joy of the festival comes across.”

Along with Ryann, the following students have been recognized for their entries: Ruth Hampton (2nd place), Jill Chiu (3rd place) and Una Gil and Vivian Chen (runners-up).

“What a powerful exhibit; I was overwhelmed and delighted to view the wide spectrum of interpretations of the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival,” said VCBF founder and Executive Director Linda Poole. “I’d like to thank everyone at Emily Carr for contributing their time and talent to this new initiative and many thanks also to Durante Kreuk Ltd., whose sponsorship of the contest helped make it possible.”

All entries will be on display in the Foundation Hallway through November 13. Learn more about Emily Carr's Faculty of Culture + Community.

With thanks to Associate Professor Celeste Martin, (faculty lead), Associate Professor Mimi Gellman, and sessional faculty members Maria Goncharova, Charlotte Falk, Gilly Mah, Caylee Raber and Andreas Eiken.

Pictured | Ryann Carney and Linda Poole, Executive Director, Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival