Monography offers a unique photography experience where individuals can take their own professional-level photos using high-quality studio equipment. This concept allows for a more personal and creative approach to photography, as you are both the subject and the photographer.

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Since I was a child, being an artist was all I ever dreamed of. The act of drawing and painting wasn’t just a pastime; it was almost a refuge, a place where I could lose myself in the flow of creativity.

Despite growing up without personally knowing any full-time artists, I couldn’t help but notice art all around me — on stationary, journals, book covers, puzzles, movie posters etc. It made me wonder:

Someone out there is doing that. Why not me?

I continued to study art in university, and it was during this time that I took a digital illustration course – which I attribute to changing the direction of my career. Suddenly, my art could exist beyond paper and canvas, enabling me to explore and experiment with new techniques – unlocking a new world of possibilities and creativity. I began working as a freelance illustrator in my last year of university, and have continued partnering with brands and clients to create custom art ever since. I feel incredibly lucky to be able to do what I love every day.

Diversity and inclusion are central to my creative vision.

As a woman of colour, I feel a deep responsibility to promote brand representation of different ethnicities and body types in my work. I understand firsthand the impact of representation in the media. It can have a profound effect on how people from minority groups are seen, and how they see themselves.

The Creative Toronto

One of the best things I’ve realized to come out of my freelancing career, has been my experience with the creative community in Toronto – from the start I’ve found it has been incredibly welcoming and inclusive. I can’t say it enough, I’ve found that so many other creatives are quick to share resources, offer help and share contacts; in particular the female creative community, it’s really incredible.

I’m continually so inspired by other talented designers/artists and creators – many of them based here in Toronto. At times it can feel daunting, and a bit intimidating seeing so much incredible work, but I think it’s helped push me to be more innovative, and experiment even more freely with my art.

Explore Rachel’s illustration arts @racheljoanis

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