Shadow Play by Bonnie Coulter

Coulter’s art of fishing

East Sooke artist show at Sooke Harbour House has fishing as a theme

Hula Popper and Jitterbug… West Coast elements.

Bonnie Coulter talks about her show which opened at the Sooke Habrour House on April 30 and runs to May 27.

“The subjects of this collection of oil and acrylic paintings were conceived over many contented hours spent out on the Strait of Juan de Fuca fishing, observing and learning the art of lure presentation as that is what wins the day.

“I came upon the charming little black ‘Hula Popper’ and its companion ‘Jitterbug’ in an antique shop in Chemainus. I already had a ‘thing’ for fishing lures and this pair stuck a curious cord. I knew, as I drove home with them tucked into my shopping bag, I would never risk losing them to the ocean. Instead they hang around the studio as constant companions now the focus of the painting Waiting Their Turn. As an avid fisherman I have gained an appreciation for the craftsmanship and artistic values of practical inventions that serve the coastal fishing industry.

“Who’s next? features three recommended teaser heads for Sooke waters. On our youngest grandson’s first trip out fishing he was fascinated when we stuck a teaser head on an anchovy and sent it down to depths unknown. When the next line was being set up Mason looked in the tackle box and declared he wanted to pick the next ‘hero mask’ then turned to the bait tray and asked,”who’s next?”

“My connection with water has always been close. Barking Dogs and stray Cats,  remembers those happy summer days at our cabin at Hatzic Lake, hanging out on the wharf. We would hold our little feet very still in the murky water and wait for the cat fish to explore our toes. The sensation was unforgettable and thrilling. On occasion dad would join us declaring that he needed to soak his barking dogs in the cool water.

“Shadow Play is all about missing the days when mom would change all the sheets and hang them out to line dry. My little sister’s handprints would often be found on those sheets and when scolded she would invariably shift the blame to her shadow.

“Living in East Sooke is a delight to the senses and ideas for paintings pop up everywhere.  This collection of paintings explores the West Coast theme.

“In short order I have gained a healthy respect for the collective power of the water, wind and tides. You are so aware of their ability to quickly stack up and inflict their wrath on unsuspecting souls on or near the water.”