April 14, 2014
Chisasibi (Qc), Canada
53.7826° N, 78.8937° W
9-months prior the rise of the Blood-Red Moon, my wife was offered a teaching position at Waapinichikush Elementary School in the Cree Nation of Chisasibi. A remote indigenous community situated near the former HBC trading post at Fort George: a delta where the Grand River meets the tides of James Bay. An ideal location, I trusted, where I could recharge to let troubles melt away like Springtime ice.
Without any firm engagements, my sabbatical was to be spent capturing images, making art and simply exploring the land at my pace.
During my many treks across the taiga and around the bay, the local Cree population would inquire about the audio/visual gear I was lugging around. I was quickly becoming a local oddity and resident celebrity.
Keen to immerse myself in the local culture, I offered photo tips. In return, elders taught me how to carve wood using their tool of choice, a crooked knife. Over time this led to conducting evening workshops and accepting to substitute teach at the secondary school.
The kindness I felt through varying collaborations, inspired me to ultimately accept a short stint at the high school (JBES-James Bay Eeyou School). Before long my hiatus progressed into a new calling to become a full-time educator.
Popular belief claims that the "blood moon" is a sign of a new beginning. In hindsight, it has come to signify my pursuit of another university degree in education and a new path as a licensed art educator.
Photo by J.M. Duchesne for NGS, BLOOD MOON OVER JAMES BAY (Chisasibi, QC. April 14, 2014)