IMAGES OF NATURE
Joanie Christian is an award winning wildlife and nature photographer living in rural northeast Washington, a region rich with wildlife and diverse scenery. Her experiences close to home and a wanderlust to travel have given her incredible photo opportunities.
Joanie has been an avid photographer for almost 40 years. Over the years, she ventured into many genres of photography before discovering her passion for nature and wildlife photography. She began kayaking around the Pacific Northwest with her husband a few years ago, which opened up a whole new world of photographic possibilities.
Joanie's images have been featured in The Inlander, OutThere Monthly, North Columbia Monthly, Statesman Examiner, and Washington Trails magazine. In 2016, 15 of her photos were chosen for exhibition at the Marmot Art Space in the Kendall Yards community of Spokane. Joanie regularly contributes articles for the North Columbia Monthly.
In 2017, Joanie was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Her cancer was caught in early stages and the prognosis is excellent. Throughout that experience, she found that photography and the rhythm of nature brought her joy and some sense of normal in a time that was chaotic, scary and uncertain. The experience reminded her to live life to its fullest, "find joy in the spaces between", and reaffirmed that she has been given a gift that is meant to be shared with others.
Ansel Adams once said “There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.” Joanie loves the whole photographic process: Planning a journey and dreaming about the next adventure that awaits. Editing the images to express a vision that is uniquely her own. And sharing that experience with others.
Through photography, Joanie has the opportunity to bring others into the world she sees. This gives them a front row seat to the world of animals and nature that is very different than the daily lives we live as humans. It is simple, wondrous, fragile, fascinating, and WILD. She has found that her photography has impacted others in ways she did not expect, which has been very rewarding:
An elderly woman shared that her husband is too old and frail to go out in the woods as he did when he was younger...but looking at Joanie's photography makes him feel like he is there once again.
Another person wrote: "Your pictures give me such a peaceful feeling. The world is sometimes such a scary place, but then you post a pic which makes me feel that there are peaceful places right around us all."
Joanie is often asked how she is so lucky in spotting wildlife. Her response is always, "you have to go outside and look". There are many outings where nothing is seen, but "on a good day, magic happens". She is quick to point out that some of her favorite images were taken 20 feet from the front door of her home. "Sometimes there is something fascinating right under our nose, but we are busy and in such a hurry that we overlook it. One of the most wonderful things about photography is finding the extraordinary in the ordinary, and helping people learn how to see it for themselves."
Joanies blog, stillwaterpaddling.com, is a resource for other kayakers and nature lovers; highlighting the experiences, lessons learned, and photographic images taken while kayaking at sites in Washington, Idaho, Montana and British Columbia.