Capture to Print: And the Stories

Capture to Print: And the Stories

Fifty six years ago Ellen and I made a trip to Long Beach and Tofino. It was my first trip to Vancouver Island’s wild west coast. Ellen and her family had previously made camping trips there. So, on the May long weekend in 1968 we headed off loaded with borrowed camping gear in our new VW Beatle. Back then, it was possible to drive on the beaches. Driving on the long, wide beaches was a blast despite the danger of getting stuck in some soft sandy areas. 

What a weekend! We toured the Tofino area, combed beaches and cooked fresh salmon over an open fire. Memories that we haven’t forgotten.

The road to the west coast wound  through active logging areas. At that time large forested areas were being clear cut, the result of unforgiving industrial logging practices. Our route to the coast passed through one such area. It was a tangle of huge stumps, broken limbs and trees. Protests by anti logging advocates brought attention to these practices but here the damage had been done. It is something I won’t forget. 

Fifteen years later when we took our sons on a camping trip to the same area that terrible mess had been hidden by new growth. Whether it was nature that had spread new seed or forestry crews that had planted tiny seedlings I’m not sure but it was clear that this forested area was being restored. 

Subsequent visits to the west coast revealed that a thriving ‘second growth’ forest had emerged from the damages decades ago. It was beautiful.

Years later, I travelled to Port Renfrew on two separate occasions to take part in photography workshops presented by Dave Hutchinson, a professional photography based in Sydney, B.C. He took us to several remote beaches and to a magical forested area called Avitar Grove. 

Avitar Grove is a beautiful forested area where ancient old growth trees thrive and are protected. I loved wandering amongst and photographing these forest giants. It is there that I made some of my favourite images. 

Of all the images I made at Avitar Grove  two in particular I imagined would  stand out well printed on canvas and stretch on a wood frame. The  finished canvases proved me right.  Seeing an image though the process of capture to print is a very inspiring feeling. With the upcoming Captured Images photographic show at the Peachland Art Gallery on the horizon I submitted these two 18×27 inch canvases along with three others to the jury panel hoping they would be selected for inclusion in the exhibition. While three of my images were accepted by the jury, my two favourites were not. 

Regardless of how the jury felt about my Avitar Grove canvases, they are still my favourites. They will have a prominent place here at home and may just be included in my Art Walk exhibition in September. 

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Great read, Stu! Wish we could see them at Captured Images but look forward to seeing the others.

    1. Thanks for commenting Chris! I apologize for not replying sooner.

  2. Love this story, and so love Vancouver Island. I can so identify with you the pleasures of viewing the wonders of the Island–all so lush green in the summer months—all 30 of them, we spent during summer vacations. Would very much enjoy to see the showing at Peachland. Shirley Rochon

    1. Thank you for commenting Shirley. Sorry for the delay in replying. I hope you do get to see the show in Peachland. It is very good.

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