Tofino Part 2 - Departure Photography

When Two Weeks Turns Into Two Months


Traveling is a passion of mine. Being at home for long periods of time makes me anxious. I always feel like there are things out there I could be doing, seeing, or people I could meet. While my university education taught me many important things and helped to shape me into the person I am today; traveling has also changed me profoundly. I look at the world differently having traveled to different places and I view the world with awe and reverence that I never use view it with. This is why I consider myself very lucky to have found myself in the position I am in today. A position with a great husband, great family and friend support, and two passions of mine that drive me to explore.

Thanks to Stand Up Paddleboarding I began to find the determination and purpose to get out and discover new things. Sports have always been an important outlet in my life. They have allowed me to go to new places and try new things and SUP has done this for me as well. However, SUP has been different. The SUP family, I use the world family because that is what many of the people I have met have become, is like no other sporting population that I have met. Almost every race I have ever attended has started with warm welcoming conversations and encouragement. Likewise, the races end in exactly the same manner. However, the most important thing that SUP has given me is encouragement and a sense of wanderlust that has helped me to follow my passions in life. This of course has led to my rediscovery of photography (which you know about, assuming you have looked at any of my other posts; though this seems like an odd post to start on.)

In February my husband and I left to California to surf, race, and take pictures. On our long drive back I made the decision that I was not ready to go home and sit in the house waiting for warmer weather to come. You understand this comment if you have ever lived in Edmonton, Alberta. The weather here from February to May is a Russian Roulette of extremes. It can go from +25C and sunny to snowing, raining, windy, and finally back to sunny in the course of a day. So, I made a phone call to a friend and made plans to depart to Tofino, BC two weeks after getting home.

Tofino has a special place is my heart. The people there are awesome! Tofitian’s are so many interesting things, resourceful, passionate, open minded, friendly, and a little bit /a lot hippy. Besides the amazing scenery, good waves to surf, and the plethora of outdoor activities Tofino is wonderfully secluded. With the Ocean on three sides and the National Park on the other side, Tofino has very little room to grow. This suits me just fine as I grew up in a small farm community and love the idea of a town based around a hand full of four way stops and zero stop lights. Most importantly, Tofino provides 24 Hr waves and amazing scenery to take photographs of. For the month that I was there my days were filled with surfing in the morning, a coffee break at Tuff Beans, and taking pictures in the afternoon during my various hikes. I loved my life there, though I did miss my family and friends. I could easily move to Tofino tomorrow; 20 years would go by and I would be surfing, hiking, and taking photos every day and I would be happy. But I would never have noticed that 20 years went by. Go there one day, it's amazing!

Now this is the point where I tie in the first few paragraphs that have been lingering there for no apparent reason.

Traveling has taught me so much and my month in Tofino is no different. In Tofino I learned so much about myself and it taught me a lot about my photography. Getting to wander and take time creating a scene allowed me try new things and experiment. Most importantly I began to see light in a different way. The images that I took in Tofino are some of my favourite and display the emotion I felt wandering alone with my camera and two dogs. Before I started photography I saw beauty in a glance and thought “oh that’s pretty” and then moved on. Now I see something that captivates me, I analyze it and look at it from various angles. Most importantly, I hold on to that moment and be part of it instead of moving on to the next or looking forward and blindly missing the beauty in front of me. It is a good feeling.

So, here's the tie in between the two seemingly unrelated topics of this post.

While SUP has given me the strength to get out and explore, it has also inadvertently got me back into photography. Photography has opened my eyes to the beauty of the world and is teaching me a lot about myself. I look at the world in a different way, taking it the moments of my life in a way foreign to me. The fall of a shadow on the beach or the touch of light on a face. It is all different now and I want to capture it. They have both changed me and I am happier because of it.

Sometimes one event leads to another and while they are seemingly unrelated they can work together to make big differences in your life. Traveling, SUP, family, friends, and photography have all impacted me. Photography and SUP are just my two of my newest teachers and I am eternally grateful for what they are teaching me.


Life is an adventure; Depart the mundane.


Genna @ Departure Photography



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