Comics from Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017



Comics from Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.


The Clam Show


Razor clams are the buried treasures of Hood Canal.

During his talk at the Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017, David Berger explained clam digging is a family activity.

At low tide, everybody goes on the beach to dig for clams with shovels and buckets.

If you see bubbles on the surface of the water, it means there’s a clam buried in the sand. This is  called…. the Clam Show.




Sharks in the lagoon



When I read this post on the Seabeck Haiku Getaway Facebook page dated February 3 2017, I thought it was a joke.


lagoon facebook

Sharks… in the lagoon?!

When I arrived at Seabeck Conference Centre, someone confirmed they were, indeed, mud sharks in the lagoon.

One morning, I headed for the lagoon. And guess what I saw….


A V shape… and a fin sticking out of the water!!!


I walked on the dock and the shark circled back because it was low tide and there was nowhere else to go.


Mud shark at Seabeck Conference Centre (photo: Jessica Tremblay)

Turns out there were two sharks, swimming side by side.


Mud shark at Seabeck Conference Centre (photo: Jessica Tremblay)

I took multiple photos (and a video) before they swam away.


Mud shark at Seabeck Conference Centre (photo: Jessica Tremblay)

The mud sharks are about 1 meter long, but they do look like real shark. It was very impressive.



Etegami workshop



At Seabeck Haiku Getaway, instructor Darlene Dihel introduced us to etegami (e= image; tegami= letter).

The technique consists of holding the brush at the very top, so your lines are squiggly and the sketch a little rough, but that’s the look you’re looking for. The clumsier it looks, the better.

The workshop was really fun. Even though we started with the same templates – pumpkins, grapes, wine glasses — each artwork was different.


Etegami intructor Darlene Dihel at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.


Etegami workshop at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.


Etegami workshop at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.


Etegami created by a participant of the workshop at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.



the gift

or imperfection

  • Jessica Tremblay

Rainman, the Frog, and the Willow



Hanufada game cards.

On a rainy November morning, I was playing hanafuda, a Japanese cards game featuring trees, plants and flowers for each month of the year  (hana=flower, fuda=card).

The suit featured in November is the willow.


Hanafuda cards for November.

The most important card in this suit is a man with an umbrella, often referred to as ‘The Rainman’.

I noticed a frog on the card and was curious to know if there was a story behind this image of a man with an umbrella and a frog under the willow.

It turns out the man is Ono no Michikaze (“Rainman”) a famous calligrapher in in Japan.


Rainman, the frog and the willow (Hanafuda card)

One day, Ono no Michakaze was considering abandoning calligraphy. He went for a walk in the rain.


He saw a frog trying to grab a branch of willow.



Each time the frog jumped, the breeze would move the willow branch. The frog would try again, and the wind would move the branch again.


The calligrapher thought this frog would never reach the willow, but after seven attempts, the frog finally grabbed the willow branch.


Then, the calligrapher knew he shouldn’t give up.

He went on to become one of the most important calligraphers in Japan.


If you have a difficult project, and you feel like abandoning, think about the little frog trying to reach the willow branch.

Photos by Jessica Tremblay.

Objects: hanafuda cards by Nintendo,  Japanese paper doll made by a Japanese senior, paperbag cherry tree made by a Burnaby Public Library librarian, frog figurine from a flea market.



Kite making workshop



The Seabeck Haiku Getaway included a kite-making workshop with James Rodriguez during which we built an indoor kite.



Kite-making instructor James Rodriguez


Kite-making workshop at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.


Kite-making workshop at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.

the kite builder


the wind

  • Jessica Tremblay (inspired by a quote from James Rodriguez)





Kath Abela Wilson gave us a taste of her very unique family stew during her reading at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017:


Kath Abela Wilson presents her family stew at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.

(…) My father was  a fava, mother a cauliflower, the kids red beans. I was grated parmesan stirring it up at the end. (…)

-Kath Abela Wilson, extract from Maltese Minestra, from “A taste of a Family Stew”, a trifold


Rick Wilson and Kath Abela Wilson at Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.

what my husband loves

best about me how I make


-Kath Abela Wilson (from “A taste of a Family Stew”, a trifold)

Jessica Tremblay was cartoonist-in-residence at Seabeck Haiku Getaway. You’ll find photos and comics posted on her Old Pond Comics website soon.


Endless Bolero (Seabeck Haiku Getaway – Day 1)



Michael Dylan Welch selected the Bolero of Ravel as the theme song of the Seabeck Haiku Getaway 2017.

On the opening night of the conference, we were shown the 8 minute final scene from the movie Les Uns et Les Autres by Claude Lelouch in which a character dances to the Bolero and is joined by a choir.

The music got stuck in our head for the rest of the conference.


quite a tune this bolero

playing on and on within my head

crescendo of falling leaves

      #haiku by David Berger