Jason Dorsey grew up with paintbrushes in his hand. His dad Jack Dorsey and mom Ann Cory supported his creativity from an early age, supplying him with paint and brushes and paper and lots of encouragement along the way.
Jason discovered his artistic ability at sixteen. One day he was bored. He went to his dad’s studio and started painting on one of his dad’s full sheet watercolor paper . “The painting turned out pretty good,” Jason says. Seeing his interest and gifts, his parents introduced him to northwest watercolor artist Wes Broten who taught him a lesson on glazing with watercolors. With this new skill under his belt, Jason placed in the top seven in a statewide high school art contest.
Jason attended Corban University in Salem, OR. To help pay the tuition of his college sweetheart, Jenny Wallace, during their senior year he held an art show. It sold out. That turned out to be a great investment! In June, 1992 he married Jenny. Jason and Jenny have four children: Jacob, Julian, Judah and Jacqueline.
In June 1992, Jason served as pastoral intern at Camano Chapel on Camano Island. This gave him a flexible schedule, allowing him to painted seriously. He joined gifted northwest artists weekly for tea at the Calico Cupboard in La Conner then they painted outdoor scenes in the Skagit Valley. During that year he taught a watercolor class through Skagit Valley College and was accepted in many watercolor exhibits including the San Diego Watercolor Society International Exhibition (where he won the Jack Richeson Award), the Pittsburgh Watercolor Society 47th annual exhibit, and the Western Colorado Watercolor Society. In May 1993, Jason put down his brushes and moved to Chicago, IL, to complete his seminary training. He graduated from Trinity International Divinity School in 1995 with a Master of Divinity and a MA in theology.
Art has been woven into his ministry as a Presbyterian Pastor. Jason served as an assistant pastor at Green Lake Presbyterian Church (now Trinity Church) in Seattle from 1997-2002. He organized Art Nights which explored themes like longing, beauty, mercy, and laughter through art, drama, dance, film, music, and literature.
Jason led Redeemer Presbyterian Church in downtown Indianapolis, IN from 2002-2015. The historic building owned by the church was shared with the Harrison Center for the Arts, a cultural development organization. During Jason’s tenure, the graceful partnership with the church and arts organization flourished. There were four galleries in the building, over 30 artists had studios in the building, and each year over 100,000 guests came through the facility for art and cultural events. During his thirteen years in Indy, Jason had two solo art shows. One of them was a series of paintings of Indianapolis where he merged his gifts as a watercolor painter with his love for the city. Another highlight was in October 2014 when the Harrison Center hosted a show for the entire Dorsey family.
In September 2015 Jason and his family moved to Redmond, WA where he now serves as pastor of Redeemer Redmond. In March 2016, work began Sunnyshore Studio. Jason’s dream since 1998 had been to build an art studio and gallery called Sunnyshore Studio that would be a creative studio and a showcase his family of artists. Living in Redmond allows Jason to oversee the development of Sunnyshore Studio.
Jason is the Artistic Director of Sunnyshore Studio. The mission of Sunnyshore Studio is to share beauty with the world through art, books, music and film.
Jason enjoys painting at his studio. He is currently working on a series of watercolor paintings he is calling Impressions of Camano.
Jason also enjoys writing books. He is working on a series of twelve children’s books that weave story and art to talk about important things. I Remember Fishing with Dad emphasizes the importance of the father-son relationship. I Remember Running Through the Woods talks about how everything in this world changes but that love endures forever.
Jason wrote and collaborated with his family to illustrate a coffee table book titled The Beaches of Camano that was released at the grand opening of Sunnyshore Studio in December 2016, a biography about his dad titled Sketch of an Artist. He recently completed a book that welcomes children into the life of the church titled Come In.
Finally, Jason enjoys producing films. He has produced two documentaries: one about his great-grandmother, Fanny Y. Cory, titled Fanny. The second, We are Family, tells the story of an inner city basketball team that against all odds won the Indiana high school basketball championship and inspired a city.
Jason is also passionate to see the colony of artists on Camano thrive. He is a member of the Camano Arts Association and serves as chair of the Stanwood-Camano Art Advocacy Commission. He joins those organizations in making the Stanwood-Camano region center famous as a colony of artists and as a center and destination for art in the Pacific Northwest.
Learn more about Jason and his Artistic Life here.