Growing up on 40 acres in Langley, Jessica Nelson often played alone in the forest and around the creek that ran through the property.
Exploring nature was an integral part of her childhood.
So when she came to the big city of Vancouver and worked with the Onsite program for the Vancouver Fringe Festival, the theme of Mother Earth was in the back of her mind for her new production.
She walked around Granville Island and picked a spot along the boardwalk close to the False Creek community centre to stage her show, titled Meanwhile.
The location, she said, is peaceful and surrounded by trees - some of which are drooping so low that they are propped up by steel beams.
"It was that site that kind of inspired this story," she said.
Nelson, who works as an arts teacher at Port Coquitlam's Leigh Square Community Arts Village, chose to centre her 20-minute story around Blade, who is portrayed by Port Moody actor Kayleigh Sandomirsky.
Blade is a tree guardian who, with The Gardener, leads one audience member to the treed area to talk about a future 50 years from now where everyone has lost touch with nature and where technology rules.
"The idea that if society didn't need Blade to be around to tell them about the importance to connect with nature then she would become a tree," Nelson said.
And with only one audience person along for the journey, the tale changes depending on how the person reacts.
"There are some choices the audience has to make," Nelson said. "Therefore, every show is different."
Meanwhile has 70 performances over the 10-day festival, with seven shows per night. View a promotional video at: https://vimeo.com/72920304.