Skip to content
Join our Newsletter

A new coffee table book celebrates Vancouver talent

'Bloom Where You Are Planted: 50 Conversations with Inspiring British Columbians'
Bloom where you are planted header
A new book by Vancouver journalist Beka Shane Denter spotlights the stories behind the success of B.C. artists, entrepreneurs, creatives, and makers.

A new coffee table book by Vancouver writer Beka Shane Denter features a collection of 50 profiles about creative individuals from B.C.

Bloom Where You Are Planted: 50 Conversations with Inspiring British Columbians features artists, photographers, musicians, fashion designers, a comedian, the owner of Gluten Free Epicurean, the founder of Sealuxe sustainable personal care products, and the writer behind bentlily sharing their passions, struggles, and accomplishments on the road to achieving their goals.

The stories in the book aim to dispel the message that productivity and achievement are the only important parts of a person's life. Instead, these chronicles focus on the journey, particularly of women and non-binary folks and the unique struggles they are challenged to overcome in our society.

These successful entrepreneurs and artists, 20 of whom are from Vancouver, speak candidly about their setbacks and struggles. Shane Denter found that when she was working as a journalist that the stories of the women and non-binary people she was interviewing were told in an overly polished way. She wanted to focus on the people behind the story and the real ups and downs of success.

The book is being published by Heritage House Publishing on Vancouver Island, an indie press that specializes in celebrating Western Canadian and B.C. stories. Shane Denter structures the features as long-form Q+As with photography of each individual. She asks the subjects questions specific to each person and their industry and lets them tell anecdotes and reveal truths about themselves, uneditorialized.

For instance, former Ballet BC dancer Livona Ellis shares in the book that she left Vancouver to see if the things that she valued in life and dance were still true in a different context. She reveals that she returned when she heard that Ballet BC was changing direction and hiring a new artistic director, Medhi Walerski. 

Some of the other Vancouver creative entrepreneurs profiled include Leah Belford, a jewelry designer and owner of Leah Alexandra Jewelry; non-binary model, writer, and influencer Lydia Okello; hip hop and R&B recording artist Kia Kadiri; head pastry chef at Miku Kiko Nakata and comedian Erica Sigurdson, to name a few.

The book comes out on October 4.