COVID-19: Photos of the Empty Streets of Salt Spring Island

Salt Spring Island has seen many 'unusual' events over the last number of years. These 'unusual', or lets call them unexpected events, mostly took the form of some of kind weather related event that turned the island upside down.

I've taken 1000s of photos of these 'events'. The snow storms, the wind storms, but also the cultural events. The human-made events. The Pride Parades, the Grace Islet protests, and more. The kind of big events that make for interesting stories. Stories that might be worth capturing and recording for the future. Stories that seemed compelling because of all the action.

One thing I would never have imagined was photographing a series on Salt Spring where the focus would be something so big, it would be about the opposite of action. It would be about nothingness. An unexpected nada. An event so transformational, so unexpected, that its outcome was unprecedented in most of our lifetimes.

In this case, these photos are transformed by the absence of something, not its presence. And that absence in this case is us. The people of Salt Spring. The community of Salt Spring Island.

While most of us were at home following the guidelines of our indomitable Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, we also left something behind. The island itself. Left quiet and unusually still by our absence on the streets and roads and places that are as familiar to many of us as our own homes.

These are some of those photos. The photos of an 'empty' Salt Spring Island.

April 28, 2020 5:45 PM

Community Comments

  • Avatar Sam B says:

    Looks like the usual Sunday morning to me.

  • Avatar myna lee johnstone says:

    you should come to Pioneer Village and take photos of all the traffic daily past the place, Bring a recorder to tape the noise too.Heavy all day from 10am to to 7pm

  • Avatar L Hanson says:

    Actually, I'm kind of enjoying the fact that nature is having a reprieve from people. Knowing that people will be back on the streets soon enough, I'm actually quite enjoying the escape from vehicles and pollution and humans.

  • Avatar Curt Firestone says:

    Myna Lee, I am glad that you are on the Transportation Commission. You bring a refreshing perspective especially when calming down the traffic. Lower speed limits and speed bumps will make our streets safer.

  • Avatar Annie2 says:

    Rolling Stones new song - Living in a Ghost Town - who would have guessed in the '60s these guys would STILL be producing let alone for a pandemic

  • Avatar Jacquelyn Menard says:

    The SSI streets and roads under virus siege: When ghostly co-exists with pastoral. Glad I'm out of there....