My latest book, Salt Spring Island Memento, is almost complete and will be off to the printers in the next couple of months. This is a hardcover, 128 page book chronicling life on the island. From the Saturday Market to the Fall Fair, Apple Festival, Parks & Hikes, Artists and their studios to the birds and beasts in the forests, fields and other wild spots on the island.
Each time I publish a new book my goal is to not only improve on my last one but also to differentiate it in such a way that I avoid repetition. I appreciate the fact that so many people choose to follow and collect my work and I feel that it is only fair to continue to bring them all new, exciting and unpredictable work!
For the past several months I have been visiting various women in their studios here on Salt Spring Island to record some of their incredible work and amazing processes. Each artist/artisan has a unique space, style and approach to their art but they all share one thing in common: discipline. Day in and day out they can be found in their creative spaces exploring new visions, refining delicate, subtle details and continuing their learning as they create new and exciting pieces.
From ceramic artists to fine art painters to metal sculptors, bronze sculptors, found object specialists, recyclers and more, the diversity of media in this project is quite astonishing. I will continue to work with our island’s creative women until I have a large enough body of work to mount a show and/or a book.
Stay tuned for more! In the meantime, some ongoing photographs will be included on my Project
page, click the photo below to visit
After closing my darkroom in 2006, I have been waiting patiently for an opportunity to begin printing my own photographic work once again. In the fall of 2013 I purchased an archival printer and prepared numerous files for printing once I had space to set up my computer, the printer and a presentation space.
My brother Geoffrey is a lithographic printer by training (hand printing from stone) but has been unable to print since he experienced kidney failure over 12 years ago. I managed to clean his studio out enough to make it possible for both of us to work in our chosen mediums if and when he is able to get back to work once more.
A bright, clean 400 square foot space is more than adequate for the work that I am currently undertaking...a welcome change from my claustrophobic dark room!
Watch for print pricing & availability through my website in the coming months. In the mean time, if there are any images you are interested in, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
It has been a very busy, very productive summer for me here in my studio on Salt Spring Island.
I finally managed to set up and calibrate my archival printer and have been working on producing many new works in B&W and colour on beautiful papers ranging from 8 1/2” x 11” up to 17” x 22”. The results are much better than I had expected them to be and I am enjoying the precise control that comes with printing using a professional series printer. Subtle, continuous tones, vibrant colours and crisp rendering of the most detailed images make working in the studio a pure joy even in the warm, sunny summer months!
Two new B&W series have come together as a result of some recent work and editing:The Mists of Time
which deals with contemplative images taken on the overcast, foggy days that are encountered so often when living along the coast.The Excursionists
is a series of images inspired by the notion of a time when visiting the next village was a major undertaking. This series explores the day to day journeys that we as islanders must take in order to reach our eventual destinations.
I’ve also managed to get back out for more (moderate!) hiking and kayaking which has boosted my spirits immeasurabley as I continue to deal with fatigue from my various renal medications. As long as I am able to continue pursuing my photography in the out of doors, fully immersed in nature, then I will be content!
I decided to stay close to home yesterday to explore the forest in our back 20 acres. We steward but do not manage the forest so that it is left in a natural state: trees fall, nurse logs flourish and trails are adjusted accordingly. The woods are quite diverse with red & yellow cedars, hemlocks, alders, grand & douglas firs, big leaf maples and arbutus trees. The lowest portion is home to a wetland area where choruses of tree frogs can be almost deafening during mating season!
Sometimes I forget how much beauty there is in my own backyard! A hike through the woods is always refreshing, revitalizing and rewarding!
A few days ago, 3 fully functioning and funkily painted pianos showed up in various locations in the heart of Ganges here on Salt Spring Island. Each piano invited people to sit down and play with the simple painted phrase “play your ♥
An elderly woman asked me what the purpose of leaving these pianos outside in the elements (where they would most likely get damaged)could possibly be: “to bring some smiles to people’s faces” was my response because each and every time that I saw someone sit down to play, young or old, good or bad, it brought a smile to their face as well as to those around them!
I decided to venture out after dark to see if anyone was taking advantage of them for an evening serenade…
The skies lately have been turbulent and varied: bright blue & clear one minute followed by wispy clouds the next and then onto puffy, cotton candy-like cumulus…typical of the West Coast! I decided to wander down along the shores of Booth Bay to explore the cloudscapes and found myself getting lower and lower down on the beach, practically belly crawling, to get dramatic, low-angle photos of some of the more interesting rocks with the clouds as a distant backdrop.
We’re heading into the summer season and the somewhat monotonous days of nothing but clear blue skies. Sure, a welcome change from the months of grey, overcast conditions but I like a little bit of something to break up those huge blue expanses once in a while!
An early morning stroll through the Saturday Market yielded some much welcome rewards: a few prints by a local artist Gillian Gandossi
for my sister’s upcoming birthday as well as a few pieces of pottery by Louise Goodman
to add to my collection.
I enjoy cooking: the preparation, execution and, of course, presentation & eating! This varied set of small & medium bowls along with a serving platter are great to use for all of the above. Roasted red pepper & tomato soup with basil pesto; fresh honeydew melon; clean-up and a plate of dry potato & carrot curry with peas. Bottom photo: Louise at the Market
As of Easter weekend, the Salt Spring Saturday Market has officially begun. Vendors have dusted off their display just in time to present their new works from a busy winter of production. It’s always great to drop by and see, first hand, what people have been doing to keep themselves busy during the darker months.
New vendors pop up each year, old ones retire and others keep going year after year with new and exciting pieces to display. The farmers are happy to bring down the first produce of the season and it gives all of the locals a chance to get back to picking out their produce and having a nice chat with the people who grow it…a great way to spend a Saturday morning!
Despite the fact that it is mid-winter here on Salt Spring, there is still plenty of life in and around our garden. The birds that don’t migrate can be found searching for berries & seeds, spiders continue to weave tenuous webs and the plants continue to thrive, some even producing winter buds!
It is an especially pleasant time to venture out early to see what patterns the dew has formed on the various fauna. Tiny lenses on each bud & leaf that magnify the world around them creating miniature, upside-down versions of the garden. The textures and colours show up particularly well in the overcast conditions where there is even light to illuminate every tiny detail…beautiful!
Periodically throughout the year, here in the Gulf Islands, we experience a weather phenomenon known as an inversion: high pressure systems swoop in above low pressure systems and we have clear, blue skies hovering above low, dense clouds. If you happen to be lucky enough to gain higher ground on one of these days, you’ll find yourself with a very privileged view of the islands as they float amongst the clouds!
Yesterday was such a day and I managed to make my way along Musgrave Road in the South end of the island where the views from Mt. Tuam towards the mainland are some of the best that you can hope for. It was a perfect day to wander among the clouds…
A new year is upon us and, so far, it promises to be a very good one indeed! The skies have been cloudy, misty, foggy, clear and everything in between creating diverse opportunities in the photographic landscape of Salt Spring Island.
It is a time to reflect back on the year gone by, to sit by a warm fire and enjoy the deep quiet of the winter months. Stacking wood, cooking soups & stews in the kitchen and relaxing with friends and family for good food and good company! Cooking is another one of my passions and during these cold and dark times I find that spending time in the kitchen keeps me busy & warm and I am rewarded with a great feast at the end of my work: a win-win for sure!
Now that the rains have begun in ernest, the levels are rising in our local creeks and streams and the greens are beginning to “pop” once more in the woods. Virtually all of the leaves have fallen from the Oaks, Maples, Alders and other deciduous trees and the first frosts are greeting us in the early morning.
It is a time of transition from Fall to Winter when the forests come back to life despite the lack of leaves on the trees. The earth is nourished once more by frequent rains and you can feel the relief as the plants and animals hydrate as much as they please once more.