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Photographer Dan Dootson captures Mother Earth's artistry


Dan Dootson photography

Edmonds photographer Dan Dootson’s exhibition “Mother Earth Father Sky; Images 280 Million Years in the Making” shows through August 26 in the Edmonds College art gallery, third floor Lynnwood Hall, 20000 68th Ave. W, Lynnwood.

The exhibit features photos taken in the high desert of the Colorado Plateau by Dootson over the past five years on eight trips through southern Utah and Arizona. The photos capture the rainbow of colors in the layers of sandstone, mudstone, shale, salts, and limestone that are the result of 280 million years of sedimentation, uplift, and erosion.

To get the pictures, Dootson hiked 264 miles covering 17,257 feet of ascent and descent and traveled 545 miles by houseboat in temperatures ranging from 25 to 103 degrees. He took the photos in the short days of September, October, and November to capture the light of long shadows and canyon glow.

The deep blue color in the pictures comes from the haze free skies at altitudes of 3,000-9,000 feet and the use of a polarizing filter.

“Each layer represents a different environment that existed here in the past. A band of limestone might indicate the presence of an inland sea complete with colorful reefs. A section of sandstone tells the story of wind-blown dunes from a time that was even drier than it is today. A layer of shale contains the relics of a swampy river floodplain ruled by dinosaurs and giant trees,” said Dootson.

“Taken together, these layers reveal a picture of Mother Earth that is forever changing on a time scale beyond human comprehension. As awesome as these previous worlds may have been, nature is the ultimate artist, periodically wiping away its old artistry in favor of new masterpieces just as astounding.”

Dootson works as a Visual Communications Specialist at Edmonds CC.

Edmonds College art gallery hours for the summer are:

8 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday and Thursday; 8 a.m.-8 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday; 8 a.m.-noon, Friday; and 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Saturday.

Art gallery announces upcoming exhibits for 2010-11

In 2010-11 the Edmonds College art gallery will feature exhibits of works by art instructor Dan Neish, Edmonds College students, artist and journalist Dan Eldon, and painter and sculptor Max Lyonga Sako. The first exhibit, works by Dan Neish, a Seattle artist who specializes in ceramics and also teaches art classes at Edmonds College and continuing education classes at ArtsNow, opens Sept. 20.

Upcoming exhibits

Student exhibit opens Nov. 1 — Works by artists in Edmonds College's Visual Arts classes. Join us for a reception November 9 at the dedication of Meadowdale Hall.

Dan Eldon opens Jan. 3 — "Images of War and Celebrations of Peace," an exhibit of photographs and collages by Eldon, a young artist and journalist killed while reporting on famine in Somalia in 1993 (He was 23.)

Max Lyonga Sako opens April 4 — An exhibit of works by Lyonga Sako, a painter and sculptor from Cameroon.

Find out more

Edmonds College Art Gallery