The Pacific Northwest is one of my most favorite destinations. Why? Because it always feels like coming home. I have dear friends there and students that have become friends over the years. There is just something about getting on the ferry from Mukilteo to Clinton that hits a reset button. Calm arrives.
But it’s the light that excites me as a photographer. That pearl gray sky that can be luminous and gentle and enveloping….. and then the deeper gray that forms an elegant backdrop for velvet spring green, steely blue water and white foam, is the most inviting light I know. The fog transforms the landscape, often at midday…and just as suddenly departs. But the scent of the ocean is constant as it mixes with the farm fields on Ebey’s prairie as the breeze rolls up over the bluff. Later, fluorescent orange and pink will burst forth, just to liven up the evening and keep you searching the horizon for what will come next.
I have favorite haunts but I discover, through my student’s eyes, a new way to see old familiar places every time I’m there. Proof that we can teach ourselves (our minds, our eyes, our hearts) to see more deeply.
A shout-out here to Lisa Bernhardt of The Pacific Northwest Art School. It is a National Treasure. There are other ‘better-known’ places to take a class in painting, mixed, media, fiber arts, or photography. But there is no place more caring and dedicated to the arts and the arts community than what Lisa has crafted in the lovely, tiny town of Coupeville. Click the link (after having a look at the images…) and discover the tremendous program in this magical corner of the world. I’m so grateful that I get to be a part of it each year.