Passeri traveled to the Fernwood Arts District in Vancouver, British Columbia, five years ago to learn the basics of utility pole painting. Passeri and the team she was with learned how to bring the tradition home. After an agreement was made with City Utilities, which owns the poles, the semiannual pole painting tradition began.
Passeri says utility poles are unique canvases that can be a challenge to work with. She once painted a pole with deep grooves on a windy day. The pole is still one of her favorites. Anyone can take part. “We just want as many people [as possible] to paint something that is for the public—something they can share with the community,” Passeri says.