Rural By Design Contest


Congratulations to the 2017-2018 contest winners!

• Lindsay Michiels, Physical Education;
• Kira Toth, Psychiatric Nursing; and
• Liam Shamray, Business Administration.

The Rural By Design Student Art Contest was open to all Brandon University students. Students were asked to submit an original artwork, photograph, graphic design or digital illustration, and an accompanying essay on what rural means to them.  Winner’s received prize packages including gift certificates for art supplies and to local cafe, Forbidden Flavors.

The three winning pieces are on display at the RDI Gallery, located in the RDI Office complex in McMaster Hall, lower concourse.

Stay tuned for information on the 2018-2019 contest!


Lindsay Michiels
Rural is when the land is your living,
Your love,
Your greatest foe.

It’s when the land grows with you,
Ridges and wrinkles alike.

It’s wild adventure,
And neat swaths of wheat.

It is life.
It is time going by.
It is struggle.
It is peace.

It is…
Family. Growing, changing, but always rising. It’s where you live by the prairie sky and the harvest moon.
It’s unexpected friends to help you find your way.
It’s the storm brewing in the horizon and your eyes.
The fire in your soul lighting up the setting sky.
It’s slumbering giants; war time heroes awaiting the next battle, sent away to rust and decay as time drifts by.
It’s hidden discoveries for only the brave to find and the land to give.
It’s finding a throne wherever it may lie.
Rural is being lost and alone, only to find an iron trail to lead you back home.

Rural is what you find,
In yourself,
And the struggles you overcome.

It is the battle with the land,
Your first,
And only,
True love.

Kira Toth

This photograph was taken at my grandparents’ farm in Saskatchewan in the early autumn.  I love visiting the farm, especially in the summer and fall when there are so many vibrant colours in nature. Visiting my grandparents has always been an escape from the city and a chance to appreciate the rural side of life.  The long winding road is very representative of the rolling hills and endlessness of the prairies that I grew up on.  The bright colours of the harvest crops contract the overcast gray which proves ironic in the “land of the living skies”. My grandpa’s brothers and family own the land just down the road, which leads to a sense of community even in an area that would otherwise be seen as isolated in the vast prairie.

Liam Shamray
By Liam Shamray
To me my photo depicts many signs of what rural could mean, in this particular case I feel that it depicts beauty with the setting sun behind the old barn, the slightly rolling landscape and the lush premature wheat crop but I also think it portrays a little bit of a dark past with the deep shadows and how much farming has taken over a large portion of our natural landscape and how it has taken away from the First Nations people.  With that being said our agricultural industry is a huge part of our modern day economy and the old barn shadowing the sun shows how something old can still hold strong in a modern day world and how although progress is good, society should be cautious how quickly and eagerly we tread in the future.