Photography in the Palouse region of Washington was all about light, weather and landscapes

Ansel Adams, the great U.S. 20th century landscape photographer, is reputed to have said: “Bad weather makes for good photography.”

That was certainly true on a visit to the Palouse region of Washington State at the end of April. But I would add that: “Changing weather and light in a unique landscape makes for great photography.”

Maureen and I took my camper down there as part of a semi-official Osoyoos Photography Club outing. It ended up being just two other couples and we were on our own schedules, but we did meet up for dinner on the Monday night followed by a scramble in separate vehicles with camera gear to make it to the top of Steptoe Butte before the best of sunset light.

Steptoe Butte, at around 1,100 metres above sea level, affords views in a 360-degree panorama as you climb a spiraling road up the butte. Below are the undulating grain fields — they appear like sand dunes in shape because they were formed long ago by loess soils dropped by the winds.

We arrived the Sunday evening with just enough time to deposit the trailer at the trailer park in Steptoe and make it to a southwest view partway up the butte. For hours we’d been watching storm clouds forming over the plains, but in isolated areas of the sky forming their own little micro weather systems. The lowering sun bathed the storms in gold and cast shadows over the “dunes,” lighting up the green fields.

I photographed the constantly changing landscape as the sun fell below the horizon and the weather moved through.

Here’s a selection of photos for those in a hurry. For a larger collection of Palouse trip photos, see my Flickr Album.

Richard McGuire

Click on thumbnails to view as gallery with larger images:

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The setting sun casts shadows on the undulating land of the Palouse, Washington as seen from Steptoe Butte in late April. Isolated rainstorms create moody skies. (Richard McGuire Photo)

As the sun sets, shadows are cast across the rolling hills of the Palouse below Steptoe Butte in Washington State. (Richard McGuire Photo)

As the sun sets, shadows are cast across the rolling hills of the Palouse below Steptoe Butte in Washington State. (Richard McGuire Photo)

As the sun sets, shadows are cast across the rolling hills of the Palouse below Steptoe Butte in Washington State. (Richard McGuire Photo)

As the sun sets, shadows are cast across the rolling hills of the Palouse below Steptoe Butte in Washington State. (Richard McGuire Photo)

As the sun sets, shadows are cast across the rolling hills of the Palouse below Steptoe Butte in Washington State. (Richard McGuire Photo)

As the sun sets, shadows are cast across the rolling hills of the Palouse below Steptoe Butte in Washington State. (Richard McGuire Photo)

 

 

Summer Artisan Market at The Art Gallery Osoyoos

The Summer Artisan Market opened at The Art Gallery Osoyoos on June 1 and it features the work of numerous local artists and artisans.

I’m participating this year for the first time and am showing a selection of recent photos, as well as several others I’ve never shown before. Because space for each artist is limited, I’ll be rotating the featured photos throughout the summer, but all are available and can be seen in the web gallery below. I’ll also have a special selection of cards and matted photos on display.

The Summer Artisan Market includes work by a number of talented local painters, potters, quilters and more and is definitely worth a browse. It runs until Labour Day on Sept. 2.

The gallery is open in June from noon to 4 p.m. on Tuesday to Saturday. Then in July it switches to summer hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.

I’ll also have a booth at Market on Main most Saturdays through the summer where I’ll have a wide assortment of photo cards and matted photos taken over the years. The market includes a range of local crafts and, as we get into the fruit and veggie season, locally grown produce as well. It’s held every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Town Square, the park next to town hall. Please drop by to say “hello,” chat and browse.

Richard McGuire

Click on thumbnails to view as gallery with larger images:

Osoyoos Lake is calm on a summer evening in a view that shows the Main Street bridge, Hotel Row, the Cottonwood area, Nk’Mip Campground and Spirit Ridge. (© Richard McGuire Photo)

The Lawless house, named for the family that lived there, sits in a field near Anarchist Summit. In recent years it has deteriorated badly. (Richard McGuire Photo)

Yellow balsamroot, a cousin of sunflowers, is abundant in the South Okanagan Grasslands in May. (Richard McGuire Photo)

Wagonwheel Road meanders past an old log barn near Anarchist Summit, east of Osoyoos. (Richard McGuire Photo)

Osoyoos is a paradox — a town in a desert-like setting where you are never far from water and where the irrigated vineyards and orchards are lush green. (Richard McGuire Photo)

Osoyoos straddles both shores of Osoyoos Lake and is connected by a spit of land over while Highway 3 runs east and west. (Richard McGuire photo)

Haynes Point Provincial Park, now officially known by its Sylix language name of “swiws”, is a popular camping spot throughout the spring and summer. (Richard McGuire Photo)

Vineyards grow quickly on the Osoyoos East Bench in late May. (Richard McGuire Photo)

From the lookout off Highway 3 heading west of Osoyoos you look out across Osoyoos Lake. On the opposite shore are The Cottages on Osoyoos Lake. (Richard McGuire photo)

Billowing clouds float over Kilpoola Lake, west of Osoyoos, on a day in early May. (Richard McGuire Photo)

The South Okanagan Grasslands are still green in early May. Behind, Snowy Mountain still has some snow. (Richard McGuire Photo)

Small lakes collect water in the South Okanagan Grasslands. In the background is Kilpoola Lake to the west of Osoyoos. (Richard McGuire Photo)