Tanya Behrisch was born in Vancouver in 1969 and spent her childhood in Fairbanks, Alaska. Ursula Vondette, an oil painter in her seventies, has been her mentor for the last decade. They first met during a holiday on the sunshine coast and now they paint together regularly. Tanya completed an M.A. degree at Simon Fraser University in 1995. Her research on B.C. forestry communities influenced her perspective of coastal forests as a source of beauty and freedom. Tanya works in the International Cooperative Education Program at Simon Fraser University.