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 Skipper, a local photographer, found inspiration in the ever-changing waters of the East Coast from Virginia to Maine.
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Date published: 2/7/2013


Thirty-six-year-old photographer Sandy Skipper of Stafford County said her love for capturing water's unique beauty and form in a picture is completely coincidental to her name.

Her passion for water, from fountains to foamy waves off the coast of Maine, is being displayed at the Central Rappahannock Regional Library headquarters in an exhibit titled "Skipper's Summer Sojourn."

The photos were hung on Thursday, Jan. 31, and will stay up through Thursday, Feb. 28. There will be a reception with the artist on Sunday, Feb. 10, 2-4 p.m.

"She captures the essence of the sea," said Christine Martin while perusing the gallery.

The collection of photographs is a visual telling of Skipper's scenic road trip from Virginia to Bar Harbor, Maine, where she, her father and a golden retriever named Teddy Bear explored lighthouses and parks along the way.

"Because of the colors and overall natural design," Skipper said, "Canoe Reflections" is one of her favorite photographs from the series.

The flow of the exhibition is derailed by a seemingly out-of-place collage called "Guitars of Woodstock," which parallels a stop Skipper made in Woodstock, N.Y. The excursion was made at the request of her musically talented and curious father.

"It throws off the balance, and adds a little interest," said Skipper.

Gary Skipper of Stafford, Sandy Skipper's father, will be playing his acoustic guitar at the Sunday afternoon reception to accompany his daughter's art. The performance will consist of "easy listening" rock renditions of old favorites including "Brown Eyed Girl" and "Son of a Sailor."

"I've done this several times. I try to highlight her show, and I feel as though it adds to it," said Gary Skipper, who always looks forward to watching viewers enjoy his daughter's art.

The art genes in the family don't stop with father and daughter. Sandy Skipper's mother, Lois Skipper, has been painting with watercolors and acrylics--as well as sculpting--for much of her life. Sandy Skipper has a brother who takes pictures.

"I think it's innate. We have a lot of artists in our family," Lois Skipper said. The Skipper house has 150 handmade ornaments on its tree at Christmas, and over 40 family paintings in the living room alone.

Sandy Skipper produced about 1,500 pictures on the trip. With the help of the artistic eyes in her family, she narrowed down the exhibition to 18 photographs.

Her summer trip meant a lot to her, as it was her last adventure with her dog. Skipper will never forget the spunk and rebellion in Teddy Bear that prompted him to surreptitiously snatch a rawhide from a store shelf.

"He had that wild streak in him, and I really enjoyed it," she said. Teddy Bear jumped into a fountain in Vermont, inspiring "Fountain Frozen in Time."

The artist hopes that the summer spirit and fun-loving attitude in the photos bring residents together and serve as a reminder of warmer weather during the chilly months of winter.

Charlotte Rodina: 540/374-5444
Email: crodina@freelancestar.com

What: "Skipper's Summer Sojourn" photography exhibition Where: Central Rappahannock Regional Library, headquarters atrium When: Through Feb. 28. Reception with the artist on Sunday, Feb. 10, 2-4 p.m. Info: 540/899-9867; librarypoint.org