North of Sixty



Portraying Canada in its future is a difficult assignment as we would need a crystal ball to be accurate and that’s something we’re still waiting to recover from the airport’s baggage claim. It’s been over 30 years though, so we don’t really have any hopes of getting it returned. C’est la vie!

In March of 2012, The Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE) put a call out for awarding an artwork to one of their award recipients in Edmonton. The call asked to create an original artwork that leads Canada into the future. North of Sixty was the result of the submission request – taking to space!

The polar bear was a sensitive subject at the time and seeing it portrayed in the illustration meant it wouldn’t go extinct but rather would look onward, beyond our own planet to look for ways to adapt and survive. Other animals follow in pursuit with similar objectives. On the back of the polar bear we have the city of Toronto being transported and moved to new frontiers.

Elements of the illustration such as the moon and the architectural shapes were photographed during our travels. The photos has been sitting on a hard drive doing very little, so putting them to use in an illustration is always a good option.

Blends in Adobe Illustrator were brought into Adobe Photoshop together with a slough of other elements and brushes creating well North of 100 layers and a Photoshop document that’s over 8GB in size.

The final dimensions of the artwork is 48 x 26 inches. Even though the piece was never awarded to any civil engineer, we intend to print it on metallic paper mounted to aluminum for extra sheen and shine.


  • Illustrator Bram Timmer
  • Client CSCE