Bokeh Blue: Blurring the Boundaries of Creativity

Visual Art

    Thanks to our insatiable appetite for visual communication and stimulation, it’s hard not to find bokeh in our favourite social networks like Instagram, Pinterest, and even Tumblr. Elyse Dodge’s Bokeh Blue Art Show took the definition as well as the metaphor of bokeh, “the photographic technique of creating images with prominent out-of-focus regions” and created a must-attend event on May 24, 2012 at Canvas Lounge. Rather than photography, Dodge covered the walls with her recent collection of paintings, transposing one creative medium’s technique onto another.

Dodge is a visual designer and marketing coordinator with a lengthy resume of experience in Vancouver’s creative industry. Raised in the Okanagan, Elyse spent 12 years competing internationally as a rhythmic gymnast and dancer before moving to Vancouver 6 years ago. Inspired by a recent trip to California, Dodge found inner reflection in her vacation and the visual memories she gathered through her camera. After coming back to Vancouver, Elyse partnered with her brother’s company, Marca Studios, in developing an interactive art exhibit that extended beyond your typical event. When guests arrived to the show, they were lent an iPad or encouraged to use their iPhones to witness Dodge’s creative process behind her work through interactive videos and additional content.

According to Elyse, "I wanted to do an art show where the viewer connected with each painting. I knew my audience was a technology driven crowd and wanted to do so something that they would appreciate. The cool thing about the application is after you purchase the painting the application continues to work so it’s a fun component to show friends."

When asked about Vancouver’s creative event scene, Dodge is optimistic and even rather excited; “One step at a time it will adapt, the younger generation is so passionate about the arts and music that Vancouver will have to. Vancouver is full of creative startups, agencies, and artists. We just need to find a way to bring that creative community together to help it develop and grow.”

The Bokeh Blue Art Show has struck its flag at the intersection between arts and technology. It leaves future artists, designers, and other creative types with an example of how to host a successful indie event. With an attendance of 100+ guests close to the relatively unknown pocket of Vancouver known as Railtown, Elyse Dodge’s talent lies past her beautiful artwork and in her delivery of a creative experience. Through collaboration and transmedia storytelling (i.e. telling a story/experience across multiple platforms and formats), Dodge was able to break outside the “right brain/left brain” paradigm and create a successful night of creativity and fun. So, who’s next?

To see Elyse’s artwork check out her online gallery at
The above photography was taken by Rommy Ghaly of
Click here for the full interview between Elyse Dodge (Bokeh Blue) and Mike Despotovic (This is Vancity). For more images, go to our Flickr Page.