West Coast Shore Photo-study

I wonder, has anyone mentioned that being a nature, land and seascape photographer is an expensive slide into professional shooting equipment? I have had good Cannon semi-professional DSLR equipment for a few years now. My EOS 40D with an EFS 17-85 mm lens has served me well. I think that PRECIOUS SECONDS – Mayne Island in paintings and photographs has shown us that, wouldn’t you agree? However, I knew that to take the shots I next I wanted capture I needed to add another lens.

(image may be purchased here.)

It is also time to move up into professional level equipment but there is a cost attached to this decision. The best glass for the scenery and sturdiest equipment suited the rugged terrain I am usually navigating comes at a price.

After careful research I took the profits from the sales over the summer of both prints and original paintings and I went shopping. It reminded my of a line in an Ian Tyson song “she’s gambled and gone like summer wages…”

(image may be purchased here.)

A perfect song actually for this west coast shore study.

(image may be purchased here.)

With a new camera Flipside backpack, I am off with David on another photo shoot to Saturna Island this week and will put this new puppy – Cannon’s 2010 EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM – and me 🙂 to a real test. For now, I hope you enjoyed my west coast shore study. We shall see on Friday’s post how I made out.

(image may be purchased here.)

Sprout question: What creative subjects are you poised to study?

New: Check out my coffee table book PRECIOUS SECONDS – Mayne Island in paintings and photographs

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Hiking Brown Ridge on Saturna Island

The August morning is overcast but looks like it will open up into a brilliant day. We park off to the side and pull out our day packs to hike Brown Ridge. A deer looks up from browsing.

The day is warm but not unreasonably hot. This grassy windswept ridge runs along the southwest of Saturna Island and offers a view of spectacular proportions. It has to be one of my favourite sky-walking trails.

Are you ready? Make sure you have your laces tied up and watch your step.

Ah, look where we have been?

Should we take a short break?

Part of the goat trail is in the trees.

And I do mean goat trail. There are about a hundred feral goats living on the ridge. We didn’t see any but we did smell them every once in awhile. Of course they may have sensed that my hiking partner was armed and kept their distance.

They did leave us a great trail to use though.

I like to look both ways when hiking. It is an old habit from when I was young and hiking in isolated areas. Things always look so different on the way back and if you don’t look as you go it is easier to get lost. However in this setting, the natural markers are so pronounced it is not really a consideration.

The day is calm but these trees must survive hurricane force winds during winter storms.

Some are not so lucky.

Others crouch low after having their tops knocked off.

Today the view hides these hardships.

At least almost… the lean of the staggered fir trees  are ever-present.

We have walked an hour and a half. The trail continues but we know that we have gone far enough for today. It is time for a snack and to make our way back. The return trip goes much quicker as we seldom stop to take photographs. Finally in the shade of the trees again, we take another break.

My hiking partner has not uttered one complaint. In fact, he has lead most of the hike while pointing out interesting discoveries as we go. But now I look over and realize he is one tuckered boy…

We sit a bit longer and I dig through our supplies for some fruit leather while encouraging us both to drink more water. Finally, revived we zip through the last 30 minutes and dig into a stash of chocolate that was left in the truck. Yes! A full 2.5 hours hiking on Brown Ridge. Amazing.

Well are you ready for a nap? Thanks for coming with us. It has been a pleasure to have you along.

Sprout question: What is your favourite sky-walking trail?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

FromMayne Island,British Columbia,Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

August morning mist at East Point on Saturna Island

After two days of hiking and taking photographs on Saturna Island, this morning is our painting day. We had already scouted out where we wanted to be. But when we arrive, morning mist obscured the view.

However, it was gloriously magical. I spotted the old machine storage building behind the staircase which led me to complete a five piece study…

 (image available for purchase here)

 (image available for purchase here)

 (image available for purchase here)

Interestingly enough it is this fourth composition with the field that viewers most appreciate.

 (image available for purchase here)

But for me, it is this last image with the thistles that really inspires my imagination.

 (image available for purchase here)

Caught up in the space of a lone tree on the point I was gently reminded we were here to paint.

Though the fog was still keeping us close

and a few families had joined us on Shell Beach we went ahead and set up.

When I say “we” I really do mean “we” as the French box easel and materials were shared in 15 minute increments for a period of 2.5 hours.

My nine year old traveling companion has no idea I have him in the frame. His attention is on the mist, the stones and the sea. Someone stops to observe and comment. He replies “it is the first time I have painted with professional materials.” His eyes never leave the task at hand.

I will share more over the days ahead from our trip but this gives you a taste and foot hold into our time on Saturna Island.

Sprout question: What creative wonders do you have for us to taste this week?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Mayne Island Summer Group Show part 1

A bright corner of Mayne Island is going to get even brighter on July 9, 2010 to September 1, 2010 with the opening of the Mayne Island Summer Group Show with work from about a dozen participants. Do you want to come? Yes I know, for some of you it is too far away. But for others it may be down the road or just a ferry ride for a weekend get away.

Most of you know, I live on the wee Mayne Island with about a 1,000 people year round and maybe 3,000 hanging around during the summer. These 23 square kilometers in the Southern Gulf Islands off the west coast of Canada are home to a thriving art, artisan and writing community with its own arts council. The Mayne Island Trincomali Community Arts Council hosts a series of art exhibits at the Mayne Island Reading Room or “the library” throughout the year.

Whether you will be sipping wine and nibbling treats at the opening with us, between 7:00 and 9:00 pm in the heart of Miner’s Bay, on the evening of July 9th or you must suffice with my blog review, I hope you enjoy the offerings.

Here is a sneak preview…

Author and artisan Leanne Dyck has submitted a natural fiber art hand knit purse appropriately named “Summer Daze” that is begging to be slung over a shoulder and taken to a summer picnic. I laid it gently on this fir bow to photography. It appears to be right at home.

Quasimodo Pottery creates unique, extremely high quality craftsmanship and functional art in its pottery pieces. Here is a group image of pottery from their website.

The Quasimodo casserole dish was featured recently Creative Potager in the post “Quiet Grace.

Artist and message therapist Shakeira Wynde’s vibrant abstract acrylic painting will fill the exhibit all by itself with its brilliant colours. She graciously allowed me to slip by her home and take this photo for our early viewing.

My oil painting “East Point Cliff” asked me to put her forward for her debut in the Mayne Island Summer Group Show as well.

As you can see, there is a diverse collection of work in the show. We will be back to take another glance behind the Mayne Island Summer Group show curtain next Saturday before the opening the following week.

And here it is, next week already. Please come on over to Mayne Island Summer Group Show part 2

If you are thinking of coming, the Mayne Island B.C. website (which also has a link to the Mayne Island Chamber of Commerce ) can help you with your planning.

Sprout Question: Where are you showing your creative pieces work this summer?

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

A Study

After yesterdays eclectic group of photos, today is a sparse offering.

These lovely little canvas prints from my East Point Images I shared with you in February the “Simplicity” post. They arrived in yesterday’s mail. I am starting to gather together material for my September solo exhibit and these are going on a particular spot above the books in the library which is hard show.

Like many people I feel physically, emotionally and spiritually naked when I bring my work into the public. This is particularly so do a reading from my writing such as on this coming Saturday or when I have my canvases on the wall in such as the September show. Yet, I have learned that it is a part of “the business of creativity” which must be navigated. So vulnerable or not, the show will go on…

Sprout Question: How do you prepare for a public viewing or listening of your work?

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Oil Painting East Point Cliffs

On February 26, 2010, I began putting a melon orange underpainting on an 18”X24” gallery quality 100% 2” thick canvas. Oh the spring the canvas, the smell of linseed – so familiar from more than 30 years ago. Yes it has been more than 30 years since I have painted with oils. And these are Grumbacher water miscible oils something completely new. The instruction I was given when I purchased them was – “just paint!”

I have been painting with water colour paints since I was twenty so I just smiled and thought “we shall see.”

A muddy lump of colour is the end result on February 28, 2010 but it felt good – and I needed new brushes. The ones from 30 years ago are toast. So I picked up new ones when we next went to the city. Much better.

March 1, 2010 the painting is starting to take shape and I am lost in sea, land and time.

Over the next couple of weeks I sit and paint several times until the painting starts to tighten up and become the most unruly “problem child.” Where was the painting I had originally given birth too?

I stayed with it – painting and feeling and painting some more. I may fuss a bit with presentation but I think this cooked.

View and purchase full resolution image here.


Sprout Question: What do you do when you have a creative “problem child?”

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Sandstone

There is nothing more intriguing to my imagination than southern gulf island sandstone. The wearing and washing of the sea along island shorelines creates a beauty that is hard to replicate. With its abundance and ease to work with, sandstone is used for everything from walkways, front step, garden beds, to cob wall foundations. Our home, along with many others on the west coast, make practical use of this local natural material.

Yet, it is the sea that has the most talent in sculpturing this soft stone as shown in these photographs from East Point on Saturna Island.

View and purchase full resolution images here.

View and purchase full resolution images here.

View and purchase full resolution images here.

View and purchase full resolution images here.

Sprout Question: What natural substance has draped you with creative possibilities?

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Heart

Heart and home are frequently connected for me. Home is more than a place of dwelling, more than the place where I eat and where I sleep. Home is where I walk, talk, listen and breathe each day. Home is as much the earth’s surface, its beings, its presence as is any four walls I’ve called my own.

I often, without effort, find heart shapes in nature. This “found heart” image is from my latest photo shoot on Saturna Island, BC, Canada. “Cliff Echo Bay” is dedicated and gifted for use in her work to Laurie Buchanan who guides us to “listen with our heart.”

View and purchase full resolution image here.

On my cyber passage to writing this morning’s post, I went via a feature of Zennie in my on-line community of Gaia where I watched and listened to this Rumi poetry “The Way of the Heart.” I feel it is a perfect piece to include today.

And, as the sun touches down on the white frosted grass in the valley floor, another day begins here on Mayne Island in southwestern British Columbia, Canada.

Sprout Question: What is at the heart of your creativity?

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Simplicity

Often, the underlying effect of wabi-sabi is melancholy beauty in its worn simplicity. Yet nature, as our life, is often a messy. Eco-systems thrive on an untidy tangle of old, new and diverse growth (particularly here in the west coast rain forest). The old saying of “not being able to see the forest for the trees” describes how easy it is to become overwhelmed and to lose our centre or still-point in the face of all that is. There are only a few vistas in my travels that have captured my imagination with their beautiful simplicity. A building on a hill at East Point on Saturna Island is one of these places. I have not yet researched to know if this grassy knoll is caused by human intervention or if it is natural. However, the minimalist coming together of nature and construction sang to me. The delight and challenge then becomes composition.

Here are my various efforts over two days to capture “a building on a hill at East Point.”

And finally “window” , my personal favourite, and a featured image today in redbubble group  The Woman Photographer. This is a great honour as there are 2,527 members in this group and 79,986 images.

View and purchase full resolution image here.

Sprout Question: What principles of composition help you to create simplicity?

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

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

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.