Students Experience the Coast: More Fun in the Mendocino Sun

By Lainey S. Cronk on July 24, 2006

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The School of Art isn’t the only summertime learning that happens at the Albion Field Station every year. The station also offers other classes each summer; this year, the North Coast Natural History and Digital Art Photography classes ran from July 10 to 14 in a spate of phenomenal weather.

Dan Wyrick, teacher, co-editor of the Life Science textbook series, and director of "Nature By Design" creation-based science programs, has been teaching natural history and outdoor education classes at the field station for about ten years. Teachers doing continuing education work and interested in science camp programs are the most frequent attendees of these classes; however, people from Catalina Island and other programs have participated as well.

The digital art class is in its fourth year and, according to field station manager Dave Weibe, “has been extremely well received.” Students have enquired about adding areas such as basic video editing and digital image presentation as well, and Weibe hopes the program will be able to expand to cover these areas.

“We’re targeting a senior audience who still want to learn,” Weibe says, “as well as the continuing education group.” The class is geared towards the pre-professional level and is all about networking: “Everybody is encouraged to share and to help,” says Weibe. “It is a cooperative learning experience and it’s extremely fun when you feel like you’re in it together.”

The art class, taught by Elwood Ross, includes group workshops that focus on the principles and elements of art and design, and the creation and manipulation of the digital image. In addition to the valuable concepts taught, the class provides a chance to enjoy the camaraderie of the group and opportunities to be on the coast taking pictures or simply enjoying attractions such as beaches, tide pools, sand dunes, and artsy towns.

Visitors throughout the years have found the comfortable lodge and rustic cabins of the Albion Field Station to be a perfect get-away for groups and families. It’s an opportunity to visit one of the most celebrated vacation destinations and art towns of the west and to take in the stunning beauty of the coast from a peaceful, affordable base in a relaxed atmosphere.