Island Blue Celebrates 100th Anniversary

Island Blue is celebrating 100 years in business.

A supplier of digital printing services and art materials, the company was founded as Island Blue Print Co. Ltd. on July 4, 1912 when draftsman Joseph B. Davenport and land surveyor Bateman Hutchinson bought the assets of Electric Blueprinting and Draughting Company for the princely sum of $1,000.

After Davenport’s sudden passing in 1954, Victor Shemilt, who joined the company in 1950, was given a year to prove he could run the business. A string of successes ensued as he expanded the business with more drafting, survey, and graphic products, as well as additional print services.

In 1969, Victor and his wife, Pam, purchased the company. Although Victor Shemilt died in 2003, the company remains in the family under a second generation of Shemilts: Mike, Craig, and Rob.

Island Blue commissioned local artist Steve Milroy to create and paint a mural on the Quadra Street side of Island Blue’s Art Store building to commemorate the anniversary. The mural is a wonderful homage to painter Emily Carr and her adorable sidekick Woo.

“Unbelievable! Steve has created a very special piece of art for us and we couldn’t be more thrilled.”  says Michael Shemilt, President of Island Blue.