LINDSAY JOHNSON has spent her life sailing on and swimming in the waters of southeast Alaska, where she makes her living as a commercial fisher.
In late spring, when snow levels rise and the salmon start running, she and her family head to sea on their 40-foot wooden troller, Sika, for a season of trying to trick fish into biting hooks.
Gyotaku- Japanese for fish rubbing- is Lindsay’s way of honoring the magnificent marine life she pulls up from the deep, as well as pass the time when catching is slow. Each creature is washed before painting it and transferring the image to rice paper or cloth.
When salmon runs slow and autumn storms roll in, Sika leaves the coast for the harbor at Haines, where Lindsay mounts prints by stretching them over boards or fusing them to wood with epoxy in the press her husband uses to make Fairweather skis. Winter brings snow, feeding salmon streams, and skiing addictions, until it’s time to return to sea.