Two years ago, when the Wooden Boat Festival team and I were brainstorming a concept for the 2020 Festival, little did we know that the image I created would be even more perfect for this year’s Festival.
With research, we knew there were female ship captains in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and we decided to honor that little-known fact. With the help of archival materials, I put the pastel illustration together only to have the pandemic put everything on hold.
Finally, this year our gal will triumphantly bring the Wooden Boat Festival back after our turbulent year of crisis.
I thank Jill Alban, who was totally game to pose for me on the perfectly blustery winter solstice of 2019. Also, the Jefferson County Historical Society for letting me go through their pictorial archives. And of course, the team at the Wooden Boat Festival, for being great partners in getting this image out into the world.
Chris Witkowski is a fine artist best known throughout the Pacific Northwest for the iconic “Flora,” who still presides over the Port Townsend Farmers Market after 18 years. Her work conveys the essence of her subject through rich color, beautiful light, and strong composition. Chris’ poster illustrations, along with her oil, watercolor, and pastel paintings, are displayed in private collections throughout the world.