In 2021, OCAD University launched a project with the support of the Future Skills Centre to incubate an art marketplace and a co-op that helps artists and designers grow their business online, while developing cultural entrepreneurship skills. The result is Fineline and the project has been shaped by artists and designers every step of the way. Following a 2021 user research study and collaborative design process, a call for expression of interest to join the first co-op board was released in July 2023. A team of co-op First Directors (bios below) is now in the process of incorporating the co-op to enable co-ownership, co-governance and peer-to-peer support for members.
The Fineline Co-operative is a non-profit, co-operative whose purpose is to help artists and designers grow their business online, while developing entrepreneurship skills in creative businesses.
This includes providing:
Education, resources, training and mentorship in creative entrepreneurship
Community building, networking and outreach
Capacity building for artists and designers to increase their profile and sales
Meet the First Directors
Cerise (CJ) Chua
Artist, Fineline Accelerator Grad 2023
CJ is a proudly queer Asian-Canadian on a mission to make the world a little brighter with every piece she creates. They have a deep love for food, hamsters, and the colour yellow.
Artist and Fashion Model, IADT Fashion Marketing and Merchandising Grad, Fineline Accelerator Grad 2023
Pascale is an artist and a model based in Toronto. Born and raised on the island of Mauritius, she is an avid learner, full of charm and enthusiasm. As a fashion graduate, her artwork reflects modernism and sensuality.
Entrepreneur and founder of Artcryption, Fineline Accelerator Mentor and Instructor
Vandana Taxali is an art-tech entrepreneur and intellectual property lawyer working at the intersection of art, law and technology skilled at combining her legal acumen with creative innovation.
Design Director, OCADU Alum (Master of Design in Digital Futures, 2023)
Demilade Olaleye is a designer, artist & engineer based in Toronto. He is the founder of Fraymer.com and a jury member at Awwwards, assessing the talent, effort, technicality, and insight that goes into the most cutting-edge and innovative digital experiences.
Sarah Alinia Ziazi
Illustrator and Muralist, OCADU Alum (Illustration), Fineline Co-Lab (April 2023)
Sarah Alinia Ziazi is a Toronto-based Illustrator and Muralist who holds a BDs in Illustration from OCAD University. She is passionate about creating images from personal experiences to conceptual narratives.
Multidisciplinary Artist, OCADU Alumni (Cross-Disciplinary Art: Life Studies 2019) & Continuing Studies Grad, OISE Visual Arts Teacher Candidate
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Multidisciplinary Artist, OCADU Continuing Studies Grad, Fineline Co-Lab and Accelerator Grad 2023
Tess Hoover is a multidisciplinary artist based in Toronto, Ontario. Driven by a passion for design, she constantly working on new projects for her personal business, Hoovprints highlighting and retailing artwork.