Mayne Island Dawn of 2012

My first photograph  of 2012 is taken before daylight as I scramble out over slippery rocks to the edge of the surf at Reef Bay on Mayne Island.

Unlike other favourite photography location in the world. I am the only one there. Not even a dog barking in the distance – just me and sea waiting to greet the day.

Sometimes a person must search for signs of dawn in order to be sure of the specific point of its arrival. It is not time yet but soon.

The lights of Vancouver are starting to fade in the distance from where it hunches below the cloud-covered coastal mountains. A softness surrounds the breath of this new day.

With each rolling wave the moments pass through my camera shutter. The sun has not quiet risen but with fingers stiff from the cold I press down to capture the first light on the sandstone shore.

Is this it? Could this be the moment we are waiting for – the dawn of 2012?

Possibly but let’s just wait a little longer.

Ah yes, there is a soft light starting to soak into the heavy clouds over the mountains.

A full dawn has come to Mayne Island.

Only twenty minutes have passed from the first rock we admired and we are now enjoying the richness of our first dawn in 2012 here on Mayne Island.

As we watch the brightness recedes into the soft reality of an overcast day January 1, 2012 here on Mayne Island off the southwest coast of British Columbia Canada.

SPROUT: What is the first thing you noticed about your first day in 2012?

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at

32 thoughts on “Mayne Island Dawn of 2012

  1. Your dawn photos are breathtaking, Terrill. Thank you for sharing them with us.
    My first thought when I awoke was of my friend Denise, alone in her hospital bed in Bristol, England, where she and her husband were visiting. Denise is one of my most long-time friends. We met when we both had baby boys. We were in the same food co-op. We sent our children to the same alternative school. We eventually taught school together. Denise rides her bike everywhere, having a dislike for cars that goes back as long as I’ve known her, about 38 years. She eschews clothes dryers and always hangs her clothes on the line. She has always been a conscientious organic gardener. She and I have danced together and played our recorders together. We’ve laughed and cried together.
    She is fighting for her life now. I hope she’ll see many more sunrises with me.
    My New Year’s wish for everyone is that we appreciate the things that bring us joy and learn how to face life’s challenges with grace and fortitude.

    • My heart goes out to your friend Amber and to you as must wait from afar. I like your wish and embrace it fully. So glad you stopped in and shared your thoughts. I am sending warmth and energy to your friend as she faces whatever is ahead.

    • I like that Leanne – poetic that is how it felt this morning as I was out early on this photo shoot. I was by myself as David decided to stay under the warm covers until I got home again. But I knew I was going to share these images with all of you here on Creative Potager so it was like taking all along with me as I framed up each photograph. Blessed is exactly how I feel too 🙂

  2. Terrill: The blu-tinted visual rhapsody here is spellbinding, a sensory early morning alarm on this island paradise. The first thing I noticed was that 2012 was much like 2011; I have to see what develops before sorting out the major differences. Ha! I wish you and David the best year ever in 2012 and on a professional level, the most productivity spurt of activity in your maturing creativity.

    It’s been a year to remember my friend!

    • Sam it has been a year to remember and you have been a big part of spreading the word and sharing my work. I did get the year off to a fast start by adding a new collector who purchased three extra large canvas prints today and my largest painting has found a new home too. But more about that over tomorrow or the next day. The blue-tint is because it is not quite daylight. It is called “the blue hour” and is a difficult time shoot moving scenes without ending up with a fuzzy mess. So I am pleased with how these turned out. More learning required yet to successfully shoot at this time of day but it is a good start.

  3. Oh my, Terrill – the colors just reach out and grab my heart right through my eyeballs!

    SPROUT: What is the first thing you noticed about your first day in 2012?

    That my husband (we’ll call him Jack), was neither nimble or quick, nor did he jump over a candlestick to get the tea kettle jumping this morning. Rather, it was me in my kerchief (not him in his cap) who had to wake up from a long winter’s nap and race to the kitchen on this frosty morn to set everything to rights 🙂

    • Laurie I have a very vivid picture of you with double hearts – one coming out of each eyeball on extension springs. I am guessing “Jack” noticed that you were getting the kettle on too and he smiled as he snuggled a little deeper under the warm blankets.

  4. awesome post just stunning – Thank you

    first thing I noticed was that I was so tired I went to bed by 9:30 pm and did not wake up until after the sunrise at 9:10am….pup slept in too….the warm sunshine on my face was first…

    My friend and sometimes proof reader/editor has just moved from Vancouver to Bowen Island and is sending neat pictures too…and my cousins moved from Vancouver to Campbell River and wow what a view they have….I just need to plan a visit…I miss the loveliness

    • Well Patricia if you get as close as that to me I do hope you can find a wee bit of extra time to come by and say “hello.” We could even go to Reef Bay and sit for awhile watching the waves come in.

      You know I think if we sleep when we can and need to, as long as it isn’t out of avoidance, then we can more easily find the right pace for the rest of the time. This, combined with fresh air, exercise, small healthy meals 3 times a day with snacks in between seems to be the right recipe for me. As a self-employed artist, I have the luxury of an easy work flow most of the time. This doesn’t mean working less… only smarter, using my creative energy to fuel and carry the work of each day. Take today. I put in 7 hours straight on a holiday with one 30 minute break and two mini breaks before starting our New Year’s day early dinner at 2:00 pm. Only one hour of that was used to take photographs this morning. Then there was the choosing and the editing and the preparing of the post. After we ate I went back to work and returned a call to a new collector to finalize the purchase of 3 extra-large canvas prints and then to answer blog comments. It will be a 10 hour day before I am done and I feel like I have been playing the whole time 🙂 So if I decide to sleep in tomorrow morning… that is just fine. I likely won’t but I might and I can if I choose. However, I have this idea I want to try on that work in progress and then there is a new underpainting ready to work up and another large canvas calling to me from the other side of the studio…. Hello 2012! 🙂

  5. These are “other worldly”. Thanks so much for bringing in the new year with such beauty and gusto. I feel revivified by being in the presence of this awesome specimen of natural wonder!!

  6. Now I understand where you get those blues you paint. Amazing images, Terrill; especially that second one, which is fascinating. What is on those rock formations? Is it a vegetation that makes it look like a coverage of cells of some kind? The surface is what others are describing as “other worldly”, as if you’re shooting a planet we are seeing for the first time. The light in the images and the clarity of the water are wonderful.

    • Thank you Maureen and the rock formations with the holes are called “tafoni” and the rock itself is sandstone. I am not sure it has been decided just exactly how or why the holes exist in the patterns that they do. Here is a link to a lengthy explanation by Nick Doe Whatever the reason or the means by which the rocks are as they are – I love them!

  7. Wow! Those photos are awesome. I was up at the time these photos were taken, but I can’t say my eyes caught anything quite so beautiful.

  8. Pingback: Pariah, Extremely Loud, The Iron Lady, We Bought A Zoo, Mission Impossible 4 and The Camerman on Monday Morning Diary (January 2) « Wonders in the Dark

  9. I really love that first dawn shot of 2012. Absolutely Fantastic!

    Both Shirley and I wish you all the best in this new year…

    Check out our blogs for a photo review of 2011.

    • Sherwin, it was lovely to see you and Shirley the other day on our way home and I shall be sure to drop by in the morning so I can browse with fresh eyes. May your 2012 year be all that you wish for and more!

  10. What beautiful photographs! I can feel the chill in my fingers with you as I view through your eyes the sun rising. How magical! I always enjoy being out in my favorite location with it’s desolate – I feel like sometimes, if I listen close enough, I can hear the wind and water whisper to me.

    My first thoughts of awakening on 2012? When is it going to snow?! It’s been too warm, although next week I’ll be heading north to the snow. It’ll come.

  11. Is blue your favorite color, Terrill? Every time I pause beside your blue hearth, I feel the energy of that color begin to teach, to share, to reveal deeper and deeper. I think the first thing I noticed yesterday in the new year was white snow. Pristine, feathered fallings of white. Happy New Year to you and your family.

    • Blue isn’t really my favourite colour Kathy but we do have a very special learning relationship. These photographs are particularly blue because they were taken before dawn during what is know as “the blue hour.” More about that here Fresh snow has a real magic to it and I seem to recall that you have a storm warning going on as well. May it be a non-event and all the best in the year ahead to you and your family as well.

  12. The first thing I noticed out our front windows was an extremely pink/red streak and then a ball of light. Preoccupied with other things I did not stand and watch but went back in just a few minutes and the skyline was grey…a rather sad looking grey but I did enjoy the ball of gold earlier.

  13. Pingback: Stage Play ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’, Bresson Festival, Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, Laura and Greed on Monday Morning Diary (January 9) « Wonders in the Dark

  14. Pingback: John Ford Series, Year-by-Year Picks, Bresson Festival, Norwegian Wood, The Scarlet Letter and Harry Belafonte Documentary on Monday Morning Diary (January 16) « Wonders in the Dark

  15. Pingback: Giants, Top Ten list revision, The Unknown, Cinema Paradiso, Bresson Festival, Mendelssohn’s ‘Paulis’ and Boardwalk Empire on Monday Morning Diary (January 23) « Wonders in the Dark

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.