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Jed Dorsey “Pursuing a full-time career in art”

Here’s some pretty big news.
My younger brother, Jed Dorsey, is transitioning from being a full-time Young Life Staff member serving at Arsenal Tech High School to being a full-time artist.
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Jed’s huge heart for the young men and women at Tech and has had a big impact, especially the young men there. Jed and Renae’s home in Indianapolis next to Tech’s campus is a refuge for the kids. They have 50-100 kids in their home each week. Jed will continue to be in the lives of these young people rooted as he is in Indy.
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Jed is also an incredibly gifted artist. His acrylic paintings of nature and city scenes are highly sought after. So now he’s venturing out to make his livelihood as an artist.
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Sunnyshore Studio is honored that we get to showcase Jed’s work in the Pacific Northwest. We’re also tentatively planning an art workshop in the fall.
I’m proud of my brother and his courageous next step of his calling. Here’s the letter that Jed sent out this week:
Hi Friends,
You may have received this news already through our Young Life newsletter, but I am writing to make sure you know about a big change that is happening for Renae, Willow & me. I am finishing up my last week being on staff with Young Life this week (tomorrow is my last day!), and I am pursuing a full-time career in art. This has been something Renae and I have thought about for quite a while, but we never really thought that I would go off staff completely. But a little over a month ago, it became clear that God was calling us to take a step of faith and trust Him in a new way. So, I wanted to take the time to express a few things:
We are deeply thankful for you all. You have prayed for us and supported us during our time on staff with Young Life at Arsenal Tech. It has truly been a miracle to be able to be on full-time staff at an urban school where there are very limited resources. Our faith has been strengthened and our hearts filled with gratitude for the outpouring of love from God’s people.
We are still committed to urban ministry here at Tech. While this transition has made us realize again how God truly is the one who directs our steps and we can’t always see what He is doing, we feel more called than ever to be where we are. We will continue being YL ministry leaders here where God brought us through many prayers and much support. God is doing a great work in many lives, and we are excited to be part of it.
Again, thank you for your love, prayers and support.
With much love,
Jed, Renae & Willow

Update on my foray into the publishing world

Here’s an update on my foray into the publishing world.

It was fun today (June 27th) to pick up a copy of I Remember Fishing with Dad (IRFWD) at the public library in Redmond. I guess I’ve arrived as an official author since my book is in the King County Library System.

An amazing development materialized out of the blue:

In June dad did jury duty in Coupeville for a couple of weeks  during which he met a woman who owns a Payless in Freeland on Whidbey Island. She is interested in purchasing 100 books for her store at wholesale price and will donate proceeds she makes to charity. I guess there ARE some perks to having a dad who is a Promoter!

We are also taking our show to the streets. Sunnyshore Studio will be setting up an art booth at Art By the Bay in Stanwood over the weekend of July 9th and 10th. We’ll sell books, illustrations, and artwork from family members. If you’re in the area stop by and visit us.

I am going to be doing a book signing at Third Place Books in Ravenna, Seattle in August (either Sunday the 21st at 5:00pm or Monday the 22nd at 7pm). I’ve promised that I can rally at least 15 people to come out for the book signing…and totally stressing about how I’ll make that happen 🙂. Stay tuned for more details.



It also looks like Island Books on Mercer Island will be selling IRFWD. I want to give a special thanks to the advocacy of my old friend Nancy Axell, the story of which I have told elsewhere.

We sold 40 copies of IRFWD during the big Father’s Day push over May and June. Jenny was the wizard behind the curtain for this push. She asked lots of our friends to share a link to our web site over Facebook. I was so encouraged by how many of our friends championed and celebrated the book by sharing it in this way.

My book is at the following Costco stores. It will only have a shelf life of 4-6 weeks so if you shop at any of these stores you should take advantage of the great price (I think that they are like $15) and pass on this information to your friends:
Aurora Village


Finally, in terms of a BIG FUTURE PROJECT THAT’S LOOMING OVER ME, I have begun to write the text for the Beaches of Camano Coffee Table Book. The text for this book needs to be written, the illustrations painted and the layout formatted, so that it can be published in time for our the GRAND OPENING of Sunnyshore Studio on Saturday, December 3rd!

beaches brochure


The Beaches of Camano Project

Sunnyshore Studio is thrilled to announce our Beaches of Camano project.

In this project our family members will celebrate the beaches of Camano through art and story. Each family member has been assigned 6 beaches to paint (or photograph) with the goal of capturing the unique beauty, story, history – the particularity of that beach.

Each family member will also all paint “our beach” – the beach that we have lived next and have walked and played on for the past 47 years.

My Dad, Jack Dorsey, has been assigned Arrowhead Beach, Madrona Beach, Sunset Beach, Pebble Beach, County Park, and Cavelero Beach. When I was a kid we would launch our boat from Sunset Beach and I can’t wait to see what dad does with it!

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My mom, Ann Cory Dorsey, has been assigned Onamac Point, Mabana Beach, a Moonlight view from F.Y. Cory’s Beach, Bretland Beach, Long Beach/Iverson Beach. I’m eager to see her renditions of children playing at Mabana where generations of families have enjoyed the bright waters and warm sand!

My sister, April Nelson, has been assigned the beaches near their family farm on the northeast side of Camano: Indian Beach, Mt. View Beach, Livingston Bay, Sundin Beach, and Juniper Beach. I can’t wait to see her capture the subtle colors of the place she knows so deeply and loves so personally.

My brother, Jed Dorsey,  has been assigned English Boom, Cama Beach, Tillicum Beach, Camano Country Club Beach, and Driftwood Shores. It will be exciting to see the epic way Jed portrays Cama where so many generations of families fished and played, and which recently has been restored to its original glory welcoming new generations.

I have been assigned Utsalady Bay, Rocky Point, Elger Bay, Point Allen/Hat Island, Tyee Beach and a Map of Camano. I’m looking forward to painting the smelters at Utsalady at high tide in July with the sunset to the west.

We are excited to welcome a new family member to bring his artistic talents: my son, Julian Dorsey, will be photographing Camp Grande, Woodland Beach, Monaco Beach, Camano Island State Park/Pt. Lowell and the South End (the beaches between Tyee & Pt. Allen).

This project will culminate at the Grand Opening of Sunnyshore Studio which takes place on three Saturdays in December – December 3rd, 10th, and 17th.

We will also create a coffee table book titled Beaches of Camano that will celebrate the beauty, stories and history of Camano and help people find their way around so that they can enjoy the beauties, stories and histories of our beaches too.


Information Gathering For Sunnyshore Studio

Main image from showing 18 of the 140 AirBnB rentals in the area

The art studio has a few purposes, one of which is showing our family’s art during art shows. However, creating a place to stay in an overhead apartment is another way to use the studio year round. To achieve a studio that can act as an AirBnB rental. I researched 33 Bed and Breakfasts, rent-able houses, rooms, and cabins by looking at their costs, number of occupants, beds, bathrooms, and other important data.

What follows is a data report that I created to help determine the future of the studio apartment.



The data comes from a combination of 32 cabins, rooms, and houses that could be rented from the AirBnB website. The focus of research was on 4 key areas to find the trends that popular or heavily trafficked Bed and breakfasts.



The cost of staying a night, along with the number of people who can stay in the apartment is what people will look at to make an initial decision of whether or not to look further into the Studio Apartment. The average cost was around $135 a night, or around $35 per person per night.



Additionaly, there were additional prices for cleaning, security deposits, weekly discounts, and monthly discounts, as well as costs for housing additional people.



I found that most, but not all, hosts included free WiFi, and that many had an indoor fireplace. However, few rentals allowed parties or events to be held. We could also rent out the downstairs part of the studio to be used for events such as wedding receptions.



Renting out houses and rooms seemed to be the most common way of housing guests. The houses tend to hold the most people and are the most spacious, but often cost more than renting a room. Many houses had an additional cost for housing extra guests.



Quantifying how popular an AirBnB rental is possibly by looking at the number and quality of the reviews given by guests. I was often surprised by the number of reviews, such as the cabin in the woods which had a rating of 188, yet did not include internet. {This may indicate people often are looking for a quiet getaway from city life}



When it came down to it, I priced our apartment around the average of a house. The idea of increasing accommodation by allowing people to camp outside in tents if they wanted to could decrease the stress of piling 10 or more people into a single apartment room. Also, the apartment can serve as a main focal point, similar to our grandparents cabin when we camped up in Vancouver BC. Having a cabin to relax in was really nice, especially since the tents weren’t that great on wind protection.


Anyway, it is hard to correctly price the apartment since we don’t have solid facts about the upkeep costs of the studio. Until then, though, this will serve as a template for future decisions


A small Camano Project, Dad’s Day off

Hello from Washington,

Today Dad and I traveled up to Camano Island to work on a small project that held large implications. In order to increase the drainage from the side of the house, we dug a ravine from the existing ditch towards our runoff pipe.

We cut into the dirt using our shovels and adzes with gusto, and in almost no time at all, the second ditch was formed. Then we created a filter using rocks and landscaping fabric. The landscaping fabric was wrapped around the rocks which were piled about four inches thick. We had bought the landscaping fabric from Home Depot earlier on the trip up to Camano, and brought the rocks by wheelbarrow from Grandpa Jack’s house, a short way down the road.

digging_out_the_trench Filling_the_wheelbarrow

Moving the rocks turned out to be the hardest part of the task as I pushed them in a wheelbarrow up a steep hill, along a 50 mph road, and then finally- half out of control – raced them down a short hill and onto the work site.



Finally Done!



After workThe_two_workersing for a while, Dad and I decided to drive to Mabana beach and relax on the sand. He fell asleep next to the bulkhead, and I took the opportunity to dig in the sand, walk along the beach, and practice my cinematography skills. This short workday and day of rest was what Dad needed to de-stress with physical labor and a good nap near the lapping waves.

The final video product can be found here:


A Dear Old Friend, Hauling Firewood, and a Sign

Good friends make life easier.

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On Saturday, June 4th,  the Sunnyshore interns had the privilege to reconnect with a dear lifelong friend of my dad, Harry Baird. Dad and Harry grew up on the South end of Camano Island and went through elementary, middle, and high school together. Their childhood and friendship was filled with sports, adventures roughhousing, and genuine camaraderie.

We met Harry  in Scotty’s Dairy Freeze in North Bend. From there I had the opportunity to drive with him to Snoqualmie Pass. I rapturously listened as Harry recanted hilarious story after story of his childhood adventures with my dad.

Our goal was to transport all of the firewood that the Sunnyshore team had cut at our friend’s cabin on Snoqualmie Pass three weeks ago. Once we arrived at Snoqualmie we loaded all of it into Harry’s trailer and truck. It just barely fit!

We then set off for Sunnyshore Studio on Camano Island where we would unload the wood. In our two hour drive to Camano Harry and I conversed topics ranging from old childhood stories, my grandpa’s favorite sayings when he coached Harry’s and my dad’s baseball team, my family’s transition after our move, social issues, my life goals, and politics. While we talked I quickly realized why my father had been so drawn to Harry as a younger kid and why they still have a strong, dear friendship after all these years.

Once we arrived on Camano we unloaded the roughly 10,000 lbs. of wood.

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Then took Harry on a tour of Sunnyshore Studio. As a welder and engineer he gruffly marked his approval of the work being done on the construction of the studio.

Once our tour was complete we made our way down the road to my grandparent’s home where we devoured dinner and recanted old tales of Jason and Harry’s rambunctious childhood and friendship.

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After dinner, Dad interview Harry on their friendship and an important project that Harry was working on for Sunnyshore Studio – a metal sign of Camano Island hand welded by Harry!

In February my father had asked Harry to use his gifts as a welder to create an art installation that would be used as a sign depicting Camano Island for Sunnyshore studio. Harry describes himself as “not an artsy-fartsy guy”, but after showing us the progress he had made on the sign we were quick to challenge this notion.

It’s not finished, but you can get a feel for how cool the Camano Island sign will be! But way more special in that it is a gift from one of my Dad’s best friends since childhood.

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As a Camano Island boy Harry has used his abilities to showcase the beauty of Camano Island to the world through his contributions to our studio. We value Harry for his long lasting friendship to our family, to my dad, and to this Island.

Here’s the video.


by Julian

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