Artist Yvonne

Island Artists

Finding island inspiration in an artist's paradise

When seeking inspiration, Yvonne simply looks outside.  "In the San Juan Islands art is everywhere," she says. "It’s a wonderfully natural place." Yvonne is a glass artist and painter on San Juan Island - a paradise she calls home and where she draws inspiration.

Voices of the Islands - Artist Yvonne

Just outside her studio lies an artist's haven.  "We have the Salish Sea here.  We have all kinds of forests where you can go for walks.  And of course, for a lot of us that’s where we get our inspiration from." With networks of hiking trails, walkable beaches, and opportunities to be out on the water, there are plenty of places to be inspired.

Artist Scenic, Lopez Island, Photo by Kevin D'Haeze

Yvonne and many other island artists use the natural island colors in their work. Rich emerald greens and Salish Sea blues cover canvases and sculptures, reflecting the natural world that inspired their creation.  "You get all those colors coming at you which really inspires your art," Yvonne says as she reflects on her colorful glass pieces.

Artist glass piece, San Juan Island, Kevin D'Haeze

Not only does the natural beauty of the islands inspire unique artwork, but the island lifestyle, too. "There’s a slower pace of life here," Yvonne says. "You have time just to be quiet.  It lets me and other artists truly explore our creativity." Whether it's wandering through a farmer's market or catching a soft sunrise over a sleepy harbor, the islands have a way of easing locals and visitors alike into an awe-inspired calm.  

Artist Working on Glass, San Juan Island, Photo by Kevin D'Haeze

Yvonne is part of a rich artist community in the San Juan Islands. "There are more artists here per capita than anywhere in Washington state," she says. Supported by a multitude of galleries and festivals representing local work, the community embraces the art of the archipelago.

Artist Sculpture Garden, SanJuan, Photo byt Kevin D'Haeze

Reflecting on the vibrant colors, striking  scenery, and supportive community, Yvonne says, "They don’t call it the Emerald Isles for nothing." Inspired by the magic of the islands she notes that the materials and methods used are as varied as the islands themselves. "I love it here."

West Beach, Orcas, Monica Bennett

Slow Down to Island Time

Discover what island time means in the San Juans - beach walks, art and history exhibits, and more!