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Sandi T. O’Brien – In Memoriam, After the Holiday Farm Fire at The O’Brien Photo Gallery
March 19 @ 11:00 am - 4:00 pm
Sandi T. O’Brien, In Memoriam, After the Holiday Farm Fire
March 14 through April 15.
Reception on March 19 from 11:00 to 4:00.
The O’Brien Photo Gallery
2833 Willamette, Ste. B.
Eugene, OR. 97405
Open weekdays from 1:00 to 5:00 pm. Call to be sure we’re open.
The “In Memoriam” show is meant as a way to honor, not just the Delta Campground nature trail but, all those sacred spaces that mean so much to people who go there to refresh their spirits. Fire decimated many such places and this project was part of my grieving process.
I first discovered the little ½ mile nature walk at the Delta Campgrounds in September of 2017. I was spending a weekend with a couple of friends on a “girls’ weekend” at a cabin on the McKenzie River. We looked for an easy hike and I, as always, took my cameras. The campground was closed, due to the fires near Cougar Reservoir so we had to walk in and while walking the loop, we discovered the nature trail. Despite the fact that the air was full of smoke, I was entranced, such a quiet magic place! What normally would have been a 15-20 minute walk took an hour at least as I photographed with digital infrared and my iPhone camera. Despite the smoke, I left rejuvenated.
Over the last few years, I have returned time and again to photograph this spot during different seasons, always coming away with a sense of peace and some beautiful photos as a bonus. My last trip, January of 2021, was a sad one, as it was after the Holiday Farm Fire that engulfed much of the forest on the McKenzie River banks. My heart hurt for the residents of the area that had lost, in some instances, everything. I felt that we needed to go witness the devastation for ourselves. I was afraid of what I would find when we went to Delta Campground. My fears were confirmed. It was cold and the road to the campground was closed. These are all of the photos that I could manage before sadly turning back to the car to go home.
In the spring I will head up there again to witness the forest’s renewal.