Yukon First Nation youth gets her art mailed across Canada

For an artist to have their work on display in their community is a big deal.

But to have their work displayed throughout the country is a whole other sense of accomplishment.

That is exactly how 18-year-old Lara Bode felt when she learned that she was selected to be one of 13 artists to have their art featured on Purolator’s 2022 holiday boxes.

“I think it’s exciting,” Bode said. “I think it’s a big thing for me. It makes me feel like I’m doing the right thing by continuing down the path of art.”

Bode is a member of the Little Salmon Carmacks First Nation and a first-year student at the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver B,C.

Bode described her art style as anime influence meets Disney.

“It’s definitely very stylized,” she said.”There’s a very heavy focus on the human form. Kind of cartoon-ey. Maybe a little realistic with the proportions but definitely very cartoon-ey.” 

She said the theme of this year’s boxes is “sharing meals in holiday traditions.” 

“Every year me and my mom will bake tons and tons of cookies so I really wanted to capture that,” she said.” So it’s two young ladies. They’re baking cookies. And they’re sharing it with local wildlife from the Yukon.”

Cartoon drawing on the front of a Purolator box.
“I think it’s exciting,” Bode said to CBC News about being one of 13 artists featured on Purolator’s 2022 holiday boxes. (Submitted by WeberShandwick)

Bode told CBC News that she wasn’t sure if she was more excited to have her work featured on a national brand or the fact she had an excuse to create a Christmas themed design.

A bit of encouragement from a past winner

Bode wouldn’t take all of the credit for getting this opportunity.

She says she was introduced to one of last year’s holiday box winners Monika Melnychuk and through the Yukon First Nation Education Directorate. 

“Monika gave me a nice chat on how to be fair to myself as an artist,” Bode said.” After that it could of been weeks, could of been a month later she sent me a message and said ‘Hey can I nominate you for this Purolator thing?'”

Bode said she agreed but didn’t think to much into it. She said she is glad it worked out.

“The experience of working with such a big client was pretty cool,” she said. “It taught me a lot about deadlines and also the specific things I struggle with like writing an artist bio. I don’t enjoy writing about myself in third person. It feels a little awkward.”

Bode noted there was an extra perk to this experience for her.

Along with being featured on Purolator’s boxes, the company also gave $5,000 through its Tackle Hunger program to the Whitehorse Food Bank.

“I think it’s really important initiative,” she said.” feel like during the holiday season you sometimes get caught up in yourself and it gets a little harder to remember that it is a time of giving.”


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