Canada is famous for various attractions such as Niagara Falls, Quebec City, and for being home to celebrities like Ryan Gosling, Drake, Ryan Reynolds, and more. But what some people don’t know is that many establishments in the northern country house the vivid artwork of young Filipino artist Jason Zante.
Zante is a Toronto-based multidisciplinary artist specializing in illustration artwork with a background in graphic design. Throughout his career, he has created artwork for clients such as Canadian singer Justin Bieber and well-known institutions like the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto, Cadillac Fairview Toronto Eaton Centre, Deciem, Neo Stock Exchange, and Canadian Tire Jumpstart.
Like many of us, Zante started with a dream. When he lived in the Philippines as a child, he found himself always immersed in the arts. He shared that by the time he was three or four years old, he already knew that he wanted to become an artist.
“Ever since then, I’ve always stuck to that decision, and everything that I did revolve around creating,” he said.
It also helped Zante that his family in Libacao, Aklan always supported him in his artistic endeavors and pushed him to pursue a career in the arts. He then began refining his skills by studying the arts at OCAD University, the largest and most comprehensive art, design, and media university in Canada.
As he was given more exposure to the different platforms for art, Zante became well-versed in graphic design. Eventually, he landed a job as a creative designer in King & Bay, a custom clothing brand in Toronto.
Despite being taught about art in a foreign land, Zante’s work deeply focuses on themes such as ethereal beauty, everyday leisure, and most importantly, Philippine landscape and culture. These are what made the Filipino artist well-known in Canada.
In 2019, he was invited by Justin Bieber to showcase his artwork for his charity auction even in Los Angeles. But before that, the Canadian singer bought two of Zante’s artworks, which are currently displayed in his home in Toronto.
During the past summer, Zante collaborated with the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto for a large-scale mural for their South of France, Mediterranean-themed patio called D’azur. Another large-scale project that the Filipino artist worked on is a series of art billboards for Cadillac Fairview Toronto Eaton Centre, an iconic mall landmark in Toronto.
“Since then, I’ve been busy with so many art-related projects. I am very grateful for all of the opportunities that I have been blessed with,” Zante said.
Tips for Filipino artists
Zante isn’t the only artist who dreams of making it big in the industry. Others also hope to share their talents with the world. Zante has a few tips to help make their journey towards success easier.
First, he advises them to create work that they’re passionate about. After that, they should also learn to promote their art form because they never know who they can attract with their talent.
“Learn how to operate aspects of your art business as soon as possible and ensure that you have a social media presence and a website,” Zante added.
Since being an artist is a career that requires a lot of creativity, burning out can become a common scenario. One way to prevent this from happening, according to Zante, is to take a mental health break.
“As artists, we need to have a rejuvenated and calm mind to create. Most importantly, have fun while you are achieving every goal,” he said.
Pursuing his passion has paved the way for Zante to achieve his goal of creating art. And because he enjoys making art that honors the vibrancy and his culture as a Filipino, notable personalities and institutions have recognized his talent.
But there’s still a long road ahead for Zante’s career. When you’re in Canada, keep your eyes peeled for Zante’s works in the places mentioned. You can also check out www.jasonzante.com to get updates on his recent works.