“Familiar” – a documentary short by Anna Thorsen

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One year ago, my daughter proposed a project. I am so happy I agreed. It was a powerful and transformative experience.

Familiar is a short documentary about my Swedish mother, Karin Thorsen. Her story is told through the letters she wrote to her best friends from 1968-2001.

This project was my daughter’s Grad Film for Langara’s Documentary Film Production course.

Director: Anna Thorsen
Executive Producer: Annat Kennet and Langara College
Writer/Editor: Anna Thorsen
Cinematographer: Anna Thorsen
Lighting/Sound: Anna Thorsen
Original Score: Julian Bowers
Research Support: Katarina Thorsen
Translator: Katarina Thorsen

To watch, go to: FAMILIAR

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Thank you Anna for this transformative experience.


Simple OWL drawing lesson using kid-grade felt pens

[Film by Anna Thorsen]

I teach OWL drawing for most, if not all, of my creative engagement workshops.  I use the OWL image as it is easy to break it down into simple geometric shapes on which to build form.

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I usually use china marker.


But we don’t always have the “right” material.


We have to work with what we have. Below are OWL drawings by SFU Restorative Justice students using just dollar store felt pens.


Working with what you have. Freedom within limits. That’s when magic happens.

See also:

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“I can’t wait to see you and meet you at the top.”

It’s early Sunday morning, December 13, 2015,  and I have just said bon voyage to my daughter as she heads to New York City for a test run month, paving the way to her big move.

A few months ago, she wrote on her mindmap:

Spend 1 month test living in New York City.

Oh Anna, my extraordinary daughter.  Way to manifest!

Photo by @sirshanemiller
Photo by @sirshanemiller

She’s been to New York before, many times now.  So that isn’t new.  She has lived in San Francisco for 4 years, so moving away isn’t new.  But what is new is that she’s 30, she’s graduating into a new chapter and she’s manifesting her dreams- DARING GREATLY- stepping into her new, authentic, successful, whole self.

Just take a listen to this video Anna made, facilitated by Peter Breeze during his Be a Star Workshop (Evan Eisenstadt Photography):



Our bodies and those of our daughters were created by a seamless web of nature and nurture, of biology informed by consciousness, that we can trace back to the beginning of time.  Thus, every daughter contains her mother and all the women who came before her.  The unrealized dreams of our maternal ancestors are part of our heritage,  To become optimally healthy and happy, each of us must get clear about the ways in which our mother’s history both influenced and continues to inform our state of health, our beliefs, and how we live our lives.  Every woman who heals herself helps heal all the women who came before her and all those who will come after her. – Dr. Christiane Northrup, Mother-Daughter Wisdom

This post is not only dedicated to Anna but to my Mormor (Kristina), Anna’s Mormor (Karin) and my son Julian, a true feminist.

Let’s dance!




Submission call from @bypoststreet! Email us for details! #art

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Message from creative director, Anna Thorsen:

HEY EVERYONE!! bypoststreet is relaunching on OCT 15 and I’m looking for submissions to become a part of our brand new website!

If you’re interested in participating, please email INFO@BYPOSTSTREET.COM with your name!

The instructions will be very simple and it can be anything you like that will fit onto the small piece we give you. Email me and you’ll see exactly what I mean!

I’ll be sending out more info next Wednesday. Thank you in advance!!

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