Being Vegan, Vegan Being: Anna Jacob – I’m 100% at Peace with My Compassionate Existence

Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m an Artist based in South London. I work in Mixed Media, Drawing, and Performance. My work is very Conceptual and collaborative, involving contemporary dance and viewer participation in some aspects. My work can be seen on Instagram @annajacobisart and Facebook Anna Jacob Art

I graduated from Chelsea College of Art in 2016 (BA Hons) and hope to start an MA in Contemporary Art Practice at the Royal College of Art in September ‘18.

What lead you to veganism? How long ago?

I’ve been Vegan for about 7 years now. I was vegetarian for about 10years and had blinkers on regarding the dairy industry.
The move was pretty easy and made a lot better when I positively involved myself in activism.

When you first went vegan how did you phase out your non-vegan food, clothing and other items?

I discovered Almond Milk and everything else in my life suddenly made sense – ha! I just didn’t buy anything made from animals and as time went on donated what I had (leather and wool) to charity shops.

Do you make any exceptions for yourself or if you are married with kids – your family, when it comes to veganism? For example, how strict are you with your children’s veganism at school or at family gatherings?

I don’t feel able to control anyone else’s choices. I do have beautiful friends who cook Vegan meals for me, even though they themselves are not Vegan. I make a choice to kindly decline invites to barbecues and roast lunches etc I don’t feel the need to do lip service but nor do I want to preach and coerce.

Do you believe we should show children the process of how animals are turned into meats?

Yes, I believe children should be educated about where their food comes from.

Showing children the truth behind their ‘meal’ is our responsibility- I’m not advocating trauma by showing graphic images from abattoirs – but there needs to be a medium somewhere, awareness of what really happens to the living being that ended up on their plate. Also the impact this is having on their environment, their future.

What does being vegan mean to you? For example, does it extend to not killing bugs and bees?

I know I kill bugs accidentally but I don’t intentionally – that’s a question I get from nonvegans sometimes- “what about the bugs?” – but no, my compassion extends to bugs and bees as living beings too- I don’t wish to intentionally harm any living creature.

Does it include not patronizing vegan companies owned by non-vegan parent companies?

No, as I believe that when big companies see more profit come from vegan commodities then it causes them to invest more in them and expand their range and availability. I’m hoping this will eventually phase out the needless abuse of animals.

Does it affect the way you treat other humans?

I have little time for those who ask me ridiculous questions regarding my Veganism so I suppose I can come across as ‘abrupt’ in these scenarios but they’re a rare occurrence. I hope I’m compassionate towards humans also! However I do suffer from the human condition myself, so am prone to bouts of impatience and resentment at times!

Is it every vegan’s duty to become an activist?

Duty? No, I believe being vegan for compassionate reasons is activism itself. Picket line activism isn’t for everyone, however, living as a Vegan in mainstream society is bound to raise questions, which when answered effectively carry the message for further consideration.

How compassionate or empathetic are you towards non-vegans?

Not at all – if someone believes it’s just to kill an animal I have no compassion or empathy for them – I do not understand their choice and think badly of those who see themselves as ‘superior’ to anything or who know it’s wrong but just can’t bother doing anything about it.

Any recommended Vegan books?

I’m really poor in this area – recommendations, please!

For lots of books on veganism, click here.

Any recommended social sites, blogs or pages?

I follow a fair few vegan pages – London Animal Rights and London Vegan Actions are amazing at bringing the Vegan Community together.

Do you have a favorite movie or videos or your own media that you want to share?

I’ve never watched Cowspiracy or What the Health – I know right? I feel that although I’m convinced and secure in my choice to be Vegan, I should still educate myself on what impact I have on the planet and life around me. I’m open to suggestions too.

What’s your favorite Vegan restaurant?

Itadaki Zen – it’s a Vegan Sushi place in Kings Cross, London – absolutely delicious, fresh and authentic. Yum Yum!

Please share your favorite vegan recipe?

Simple Spinach Pesto – takes all of 5 mins to make and always hits the spot

Some encouraging words for new Vegans?

Trust your choice. Make it a blessing for yourself

What is the vegan scene like in your city?

Quite good actually- however anytime I go to any Vegan restaurant or market, they’re usually very busy – hence – we need more!

What personal recommendations can you make for people to meet other vegans?

Meet up groups and Facebook groups – there are so many of them, for everything in between. activism to hobbies- go have fun!

What does living cruelty-free mean to you?

Being conscious, trying to minimize suffering and cruelty, sharing justice among all beings in consideration and compassion.

Does it extend to the way you as a vegan treats other humans too?

Of course, I don’t want to eat people either.

What are you favorite Vegan non-food products or companies?

Brooks trainers – I got a pair of awesome running shoes from them – it’s like running on a cloud!
I love Demonia shoes – however impractical for everyday wear- they’re just beautiful
I live in my Vegan Doc Martins though.

What is the toughest Vegan item to find that you need?

Hmm- I seem to be able to find everything I need – I do live in Central London though, so I’m good.

Talk about a time when you struggled with your Veganism?

I’ve never struggled with my Veganism, I’ve only felt irritated with the ignorance of others towards my choice – them believing I’m a ‘fussy’ eater or a bit highly strung with my diet – otherwise, I’m 100% at peace with my compassionate existence.

Tastemaker Supply – 100% Vegan Footwear – Pictured – Women’s Taste Artistry (Red)

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